Organisation 101

University has been one of the best experiences of my young life, and one of the reasons is the social aspect is so much fun! But in between all the fun, you are meant to study. Luckily, I have found a few tricks to help with being organised to make sure I never forget when an assignment is due, when a Res Shield event is or when the next social event is. Here are my five tips for being organised.

Pic 1

  1. Make a list

I know this might seem like a very obvious thing, but my list is more detailed; at the beginning of each semester I make a list of all the assessments I have for each class, including the assignment type (Quiz, Oral, Assignment, etc.), when the assignment is due, and the percentage it is worth for the class. Additionally when I receive a result back I note what percentage I got to keep track of how I am doing in the class.

  1. Colour Code Everything

I highlight everything. My big yearlong calendar has so much writing and highlighting on it, and it makes such a difference;

  • Res Shield events; purple
  • Assessment; blue
  • Birthdays; yellow
  • Res College Social events; green
  • Parties and Social events; pink.

Trust me, it makes events a lot easier to find.

Additionally with colour coding, if you have individual books and folders, get ones in matching colours, that way you always know the book and folder belong together.

  1. Desk Organisation

Make the most of your space at college. The best way I have found is having desk organisation/storage.  I can actually see my stuff and am more motivated to study. It is so much easier during exam block to know where everything is; pens, sticky notes, notebooks, highlighters, all within reach and easy to see.

  1. Closet OrganisationPic 2

Now I understand some people like to bring a lot of clothing and such to college, so it is important to make the most of your closet space. Hanging storage has been such a space saver for me. I have a hanging section, shelving for bags/shoes/jumpers (depending on time of year), and hanging organisers, it has saved me so much space, honestly.

  1. Under the bed

My biggest asset for hiding all of my mess is giant storage boxes under my bed (labelled so I know where everything is). Additionally I keep a shoe rack under there, and for anyone who plays sports or just generally owns far too many shoes I would recommend this as a must!

I hope these tips were useful for you. Let me know if you have any other organisation tips in the comments below.

The top five tips of college living

When I first decided to move to the USQ Residential Colleges, I panicked. What if I forget something (seemingly essential that is actually not worth owning in the first place), what if I don’t like my roommate, what if they cancel Game of Thrones as a consequence of me moving. But believe it or not, I survived! And from this here are my top five tips for living on college.

#1 Don’t over pack.

Now, when I first moved to college I was thinking I’d need everything; “oh my god, I certainly can’t not bring 14 pairs of shoes! That would be madness….apparently. We all do it though, think there will without doubt be an occasion that you absolutely need a million options. Trust me, there won’t be, and even if there are no rules saying you can’t go home (or get it posted).

#2 Be a good roommate. Kara and Michaela

I am incredibly lucky, my roommate is amazing, she is the one I go to Kmart with 6 times a week; the one who texts me if dinner is worth getting out of bed for, and the one who reassures me I can definitely finish that 2000 word assignment in one day, no problem. But on the off chance you don’t have the world’s best roommate, you should still follow these few rules; keep common areas clean and don’t be loud and annoying.

#3 Things you won’t think to bring.

  • A cup, a bowl, a plate and a fork. You’ll want them eventually.
  • A printer. Yes I know you could just print at the uni. But the number of people begging to borrow printers mid semester is crazy. If you can get one, get one.
  • Blue tack. I can’t even work out how much I have usedcollege colours during my time at uni. Bring it and bring lots!
  • Bring your college colours! You will play Res shield sport often and early, make sure you can show some college pride!
  • A fan. Summer is hot! I know that isn’t news to anyone, but during last year’s heat wave many residents attempted to buy fans, but they were sold out! Don’t let this happen to you, they can be pulled apart and put away. Be prepared!
  • A spare set of sheets and a spare towel. They will get dirty, and you will not have the four individual one dollar coins to wash them. Bring spare!

#4 Plan! Plan! Plan! weekly planner whiteboard

I am not good at remembering, I am so forgetful. I plan out my weeks and believe it stops those assignments from sneaking up so fast. Additionally when you have res shield every other week, and blogs are due (oops) this really helps to keep you on track. Additionally bring fun coloured whiteboard markers, just cause, fun!

#5 Don’t be scared.

I was so nervous when I moved to college, but after you actually meet everyone and you start interacting with other colleges it isn’t so scary. Don’t stay in your room cause you are too scared to talk to people, get out there and show some courage. There will always be something going on, and we want you to be there, the more people, the more fun!

So there you have it, my top five tips for living on college. A guide to a worthwhile experience.

Why live on college?

There are literally so many reasons why living on college is a good thing. In fact there are so many that if you actually asked the question “why live on college?” and then read this entire article, you would probably find yourself packing your things and moving there right away.

Firstly, the most obvious benefit of living on campus is the convenience of it. Even if you have a dreaded 8am class, you can still afford to sleep longer than you would in a house because you just have to get dressed and walk to your buffet breakfast where you can eat what you like amongst the company of your friends who are also up at that time. When you finish with your plate, the amazing friendly kitchen staffs wash it up for you and you walk your way across the road to your class. Speaking of convenience, all your bills are also put together into a single bill so that you don’t have to waste your time paying a million separate things. You have Internet in you room as well as WIFI around the common rooms and surrounding areas. Oh and did I mention there’s a gym just next door that gives us sweet deals because we’re students? It’s seriously so convenient that we almost become lazy. However it does allow for us to focus on the study.

Block party #redfoo #nurses #degree #stereotypes #swag #yolo

A post shared by Kent Tonscheck (@kenttonscheck) on

Secondly, college is fun. We have a big contest each year between all colleges called Residential Shield, or “Res-shield” as we all call it, that basically consists of lots of different sporting and cultural events throughout the year. There’s no reason for you to ever get bored if you’re one of those people that study something that allows you free time. It’s so important that you get involved in these types of events because they help you to take your mind off study and reduce stress while keeping your body and mind healthy. Other fun aspects of college are things such as block films for Semi-Formal and Formal. Lots of times we make them so bad that they’re good and really focus on making something funny. As you can imagine, after the formal is finished, everyone is in fits of laughter and makes for good stories for weeks to come.

Lastly, college is supportive. While on college I made friends with so many people and they’re contacts I will have forever. Everyone looks out for each other and when you need a friend to talk to, there is always someone just down the hall. If there’s not, there is always someone in the next block. You literally have friends living a small walk from your bedroom door. If you need support with your studies or want to see a councillor, there are support teams just across the road or an email away. If you’re like me and come from a family farm struggling through tough weather, you can find financial support and scholarships specifically for you.

My degree was three years in duration and I lived there from start to finish. I wouldn’t change a thing! I learnt a lot, completed my course and will have friends for life thanks to college.

P.S. I’d totally love it if you could check out and buy my debut EP just released

https://itunes.apple.com/au/album/life-love-tales-ep/id939931395

And the winner is… Steele Rudd!

And there was much clapping, standing, fist pumping, high fiving and celebration.  The bards will sing about the glories of this win to many freshers to come.  The news is out, Steele Rudd has won the Residential Shield cup.  What a year – All three colleges consistently impressed me with their skill and commitment in all events.  Short film is one of the more light-hearted competitions between the colleges, and you can re-live the action below.  All videos had to contain items like a Shakespeare poster, Big Brother, Nutella, the Game of Thrones theme, Billy Jean and many others.  Enjoy!

Steele Rudd College:

Concannon College:

McGregor College:

Thanks to Simon Merange for the usage of his YouTube channel!

Batman and the Bin Bandits

Every Year, as part of the Residential Shield competition, each college is required to submit a short film for judging and comparison between the three colleges. We are supplied with a set of unusual criteria, and asked to devise, write and film an 8-10 minute film based on these. As an Acting student, and someone with relatively few otherwise useful talents, this is one of the only competitive cross-college events that I’m any use in. That said, it’s also quite possibly the most fun of the lot. I’ve attached McGregor’s 2013 video, which consists of all things unusual from Batman to Bart Simpson, to Bandits riding in bins. The criteria for this video dictated that they each video must include:

A Glee Style Music Number

  • The Song Footloose
  • Bart Simpson
  • Brad Pitt
  • The 1950’s Batman theme
  • A dustpan and brush
  • A Cheerleader
  • A scene shot in the new Refectory

Naturally this peculiar mix makes for quite a unique artistic predicament among the creative team for the video, and poses a special set of challenges for us as a unit. We are, however, extremely confident that we effectively met almost all of these terms with our film, and, let’s face it, produced an award-worthy piece of art. We didn’t take home any Oscars, but boy were we worthy.
This masterpiece stars yours truly as Officer Niel Raymonds, and Emily Martin as his partner ‘Happy’. Filmed and Edited by Simon Merange and featuring the supporting Talents of Brendan O’Leary, Jennifer Laycock, Steph ‘Batman’ Piper and Thomas Pitt Hooley. Special Thanks to Steph for the Link.

Until Next Time,

Josh

Time Management (From a Creative Artist’s Perspective)

Yes I know, there are millions of these “Time management” things on the web and probably several scattered throughout this very website. But how many are specifically focused from a Creative Artist’s point of view? We all have our unique methods of dealing with time management and I’m going to share with you some of my particular struggles and solutions.

Time Management

Uni is a lot different to high school, as we aren’t forced by the threat of punishment for wagging a class. Some lecturers mark an attendance role in certain classes just to ensure that people aren’t missing out on important information, however, for the majority of the classes, it’s entirely up to you to attend class and get your work done. The difference I guess is that you are studying one course that you are interested in unlike high school where there could be 5 other subjects that you are doing purely because they’re compulsory. Thus you become self-motivated to attend classes. Thankfully, you can log onto study desk and get a weekly refreshed timetable of the classes for that week. This helps a lot for planning and is a very good place to start.

Now, if you’re in creative arts, here’s where things get tricky. Be it Music, Theater, Creative Media or Visual Arts, there is always rehearsal or work to do outside of the timetabled classes. I study Music major with a minor in Creative Media so I’m specifically speaking from my experiences with these. I am involved with several ensemble groups with music and within creative media I have had to spend many late hours forfeiting sleep to get projects done.

Somewhere in there I need to do my own personal practice, actually get some sleep (I’m not invincible) get outside-of-class work done, do gigs, live the social side of college life by getting involved in the Res Shield events and simply live life.

My SOLUTION! Here’s what I have found to be the most effective method. You need to get your hands on a massive wall calendar, whether it’s a Redfrogs or a USQ one, get yourself a calendar. When I’m emailed about events to play at or workshops to prepare for, when there are important events to attend, when assignment due dates are released, WRITE THEM ON THE CALENDAR. The lie people always tell themselves is “I don’t need to make a note of that. I’ll remember it.” Seriously the calendar will help you remember and plan.

Redfrogs Uni Planner

This leads me to my next method. Get yourself a little “Things To Do” whiteboard. There is nothing more satisfying than wiping off reminders as you finish tasks. Your trusty calendar will show general big reminders but your whiteboard will help you remember the specifics for each day.

Things to do planner

With the possession of these two items, you are bound to be more productive and remember a lot more important dates. You’ll find this really helpful and important when doing assignments and being seen as a professional and turning up to rehearsals.

How do you manage your time?

Residential Shield Short film

Hello again

What has everyone been up to? Unless you have been saving the world, flying to the moon or found a way to make money grow on trees and have been travelling the corners of the world, then I think the past few weeks for me have been just as, if not, more exciting than yours!

I have finished yet another year on residential colleges, that makes 3 for me. It is so crazy to think it has been that long, and I can still remember my first day at Concannon as a 17 year old. Now I am 20 (Yuck!), was a Residential Advisor, and now next year I will be taking on the role as Social Co-ordinator of the Concannon College Resident Student Club. Pretty much, I, along with four others on the RSC,  get to organize all the cool, fun stuff on college for the residents. The main being O-Week, Semi Formal, and Formal, as well as many others in between.

I thought this blog would be a good opportunity to show whoever is reading this the Concanon Short Film for 2013. If you have read previous blogs from other residents they mention this, and I am here to tell you it is one of the best things about college. Look out Morgan Freeman and every other award winning actor, some of the Concannon Residents have found a new calling. Despite the acting skills being described by critics as “breathtaking” and “the best acting since Titanic”, it was it was advised they don’t quit their degree to pursue this as new career.

Short film is always stressful to film and time consuming to edit, however it also a lot of fun. For your own viewing pleasure, it is below…

 

 

Thanks for reading/watching.

Until next time,

Nicky

Second Semester Studies

Hey again everyone,

I hope you all enjoyed your holidays, even though they are over now and exams aren’t just around the corner – they are right next door to us. It wasn’t really that much of a holiday for me, as I took it as a chance to take up extra hours at work. So, I had been working every day of the holidays, what a way to make a living! (You can call me Dolly Parton). Apart from working and study, I also celebrated my 20th Birthday.

I still have mixed feelings about turning 20. On one hand, I am less than a year away from my 21st, which I am excited about. However, on the other, I am no longer a teenager, which frightens the living daylights out of me. My mum said to me on my birthday, “Nicky, with great age comes great responsibility” EEEEEEKKKK *Red alert!*. I chose to ignore her.

On a lighter note, the Gatsby Gala was a success. After many hours and hours of hard work from the executive and charity committee, we managed to put on a great evening which was well enjoyed by all who attended. With many attractions such as Casino Tables, Live Band and Dancing, as well as a charity auction on the night..However, it is safe to say the highlight for many was the photobooth. Here are some photos from some of the awesome people who attended.

1150142_10151796012418340_1046880508_n

We also raised $5000 for the Pajama Foundation and the AEIOU Foundation, which makes all of the hard work and stress worth it. If you would like more information on these charities and what they do, you can simply google them.

As well as charity ball, all of residential colleges also celebrated the ending of the Residential Shield. One of the best things about college, Res Shield brings the colleges together throughout the year, with their eyes on the prize. Unfortunately for me and the rest of Concannon, McGregor came out on top and took the shield this year for the second year in a row. Steele Rudd won the College Spirit Cup, which was well deserved.
Anyway, I better get back to my studying. Thanks again for reading, I will talk to you once exams are over.

The Final Countdown

The countdown begins. Only one month until college formals begin, two and a half months until mid-semester break and then four months until I finish my degree. Then it will all be over. No more uni. No more college.

A lot has changed since I made the big leap to move out of home to a different town in order to create something of my own. And you know what? It paid off. I have spent the last three years living with some of the best, and sometimes the worst people I have met. In the process I have learnt a lot about myself as well. I think it’s only fitting that I share some of the major experiences I have had since living on college and some things you should probably know before taking this massive step.

1004451_10151710748378340_1649541531_n (1)

Experience #1

Working two jobs while studying full-time and living on college is difficult, yes, but not impossible.

Having been fortunate enough to get a transfer with my Christmas casual job and stay on as a casual retail person, I was also lucky enough to land a role as the first digital intern for Residential Colleges – a role exclusive to college kids. Yay! Not only will this job look awesome on my resume but also made me learn a few things about what I want to do with my future career. It’s a massive opportunity to develop myself and learn what I really want.

In saying this, it’s not always easy. There are those nights when it feels like the whole college is out having fun except for me. Just remember, you will feel better off the next day at work and you will also save your money. But do remember to have a break sometime, or you will probably crash at the worst time.

603901_10151330117992257_537714636_n

Experience #2

Do not eat ice cream out of a cone at the dinner table, or sit next to someone eating an ice cream cone.

There is such thing as ‘coning’. It’s not fun when it happens to you because BAM! There goes your ice cream. It’s also not fun when it happens to the person next to you because BAM! There goes your clean shirt. If you want to eat at the table I suggest getting a bowl or even styrofoam cup. Otherwise take the ice cream cone and leg it! Bowls and cups also allow you to add toppings.

lh_coning_sized1

Experience #3

You may have close friends at other colleges but as soon as Res Shield starts, it’s war.

As soon as you put on your red, green or blue, it’s game on. You’re fighting for the shield and you’re either with your college or against it. When you’re standing on the field or on the stage ready to perform, there’s no right or wrong so long as you give it everything you have and you’re not fraternising with the enemy.

Concannon

While everyone will have their own experience of college, I hope these tips and tricks will inspire you to share your own story.