Category Archives: Student life

Everything student life – from halls and flatting to recipes, advice, reviews, fashion and travel.

UC Library ‘Can your fines’ a huge success

Every year UC Library runs the ‘Can your fines’ campaign. The campaign supports both UC students and the wider community and has been a feature of the library calendar for 3 years now.

Students who bring in a can of food during the campaign can wipe $5 from their library fines. The campaign is usually scheduled towards the end of the year, a time that can be stressful for students who have upcoming exams and for the broader community with Christmas looming.

Associate University Librarian Lyndsay Ainsworth agrees the campaign is great way to relieve students stress of owing money.

“Can your fines or other food for fines packages are initiatives that have been used successfully in libraries around the world for many years to allow students to be relieved of the stress of owing money to the library while making a wider contribution to their community. It’s great to partner with a community organisation like the City Mission and help them in their work,” she says.

This years ‘Can your fines’ campaign at UC Library collected over 400 cans which were donated to the Christchurch City Mission.

The 7-year degree: studying for a PhD in Life and Resilience

This week Tumama Tu’ulua  from the Pacific Development Team shares a student perspective on studying during the exam break.

Seven years.

That’s how long it takes for chewing gum to digest after you’ve swallowed it. It’s also how long I’ve been studying my Bachelors degree – 25 years old and still studying.

Its been a cocktail of trials, a lot of errors, and a test of will. To be fair I haven’t studied that whole time, choosing to pursue sport in little chunks throughout and studying part-time, but when I look back at it and when other people look at it that’s how its going to look.

To say it was never hard to keep going when it didn’t seem worth it anymore, would be a lie. There are many times where I felt I was over study, felt like giving up, felt like leaving, and even felt like a bachelors degree was beneath me at one stage lol.

But I stuck in there (and am still sticking in there), not because I had to, or, because of the millions of resilience cliches, but because this degree isn’t just for me – its for everyone that has helped me have the opportunity to study and has kept me here. Now to me that is the definition of success, making my family proud, and providing for them.

For you it could be something completely different and that’s awesome, but my tips in staying resilient especially during the exam period but for uni in general is to:

  1. Know why you are here
  2. Know what your defintion of success is
  3. Know how success and happiness feels

These three things have helped me stay here.

When things get tough knowing my purpose for being here gives me something to hold on to, its my light at the end of the tunnel.

Knowing what success is to me, helps me recognise whether, or, not what I’m doing is adding value, it gives me direction.

Knowing how success feels helps me differentiate between when I’m under pressure and when I’m getting stressed.

You can’t operate under stress, so truly knowing how I feel when succeeding and happy gives me a measuring stick to when I’m getting stressed and I know I need to have a break.

A degree is the one tangible thing that validates to the world what I did here at UC. The relationships that I made here are so much more important to me, but, the things I’ve learnt mean a lot less to the world without that piece of paper. Studies were always my back-up plan, but when plan B becomes A its initially a hard switch to make. But put in the work, access the help available, stay focused and get the treats! Good luck with exams, hang in there, it will get easier, it will get better. UC for Life! (Literally lol).

Tumama Tu’ulua  – Pacific Engagement Coordinator
Pacific Development Team

International students – help us and win a Black Cat cruise

International students – we need your help, and you might win a Black Cat cruise!

We need a focus group of international students who enrolled for the first time at UC in Semester 1 or 2 this year (2017) to spend one-hour with us on Friday 27 October 12 noon to 1 pm to give us advice on the Guide to UC for international students.

We’ll provide lunch plus you have the opportunity to go into a draw to win a double pass to experience the Akaroa Harbour Nature 2011 AHNC composite 3a RGBCruise.

Thanks Black Cat Cruises!  #blackcatcruises
Check out their info and the photo gallery below.

Interested? Here’s what to do:

  1. Email us  by 5pm Tuesday 24 October at with the subject heading: UC Guide.
  2. Tell us why you think you would be good at providing us with advice on the Guide to UC for international students.
  3. Provide us with your student identification number.

We will let you know if you have been selected to be a part of the focus group on Wednesday 25 October.

Check out these awesome photos and imagine yourself on a Black Cat cruise…


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