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07 June 2018 Photo Supplied
Emotional safety during examinations

Mid-year exams have begun and with crunch time comes emotional upheaval. However, it is manageable and should not deter you from the end-goal of succeeding in your studies while maintaining high mental health standards.

“The exam period is a time when stress and anxiety levels are higher than usual. Stress can be positive and help you stay motivated and focused. However, too much stress can be unhelpful and can make you feel overwhelmed, confused, exhausted and edgy,” says Dr Melissa Barnaschone, Director of Student Counselling and Development at the University of the Free State (UFS).

According to Helpguide.Org: Trusted guide to mental & emotional health, “Mental and emotional health is about being happy, self-confident, self-aware, and resilient. People who are mentally healthy are able to cope with life’s challenges and recover from setbacks. But mental and emotional health requires knowledge, understanding, and effort to maintain. If your mental health isn’t as solid as you’d like it to be, here’s the good news: there are many things you can do to boost your mood, build resilience, and get more enjoyment out of life.”

For further details on topics including: Building Better Mental Health, Emotional Intelligence Toolkit, Benefits of Mindfulness, Improving Emotional Intelligence (EQ), Cultivating Happiness, visit the Help Guide. 

Dr Barnaschone has a few tips on how Kovsies can better approach academic anxiety during the examination period. Here is what she has to say:

News Archive

The first female heart surgeon in South Africa is a Kovsie
2014-12-15


Dr Susan Vosloo is South Africa’s first female heart surgeon. She graduated from the University of the Free State (UFS) in 1980.

“Being a Kovsie student brings back great memories. I received great medical training at the UFS and have fond memories of my time at the university,” she says.

Dr Vosloo completed her internship in Pretoria and spent the following year in Critical Care Medicine at Universitas Hospital, Bloemfontein, before starting her surgical training in Johannesburg.

She is currently in independent private practice at the Netcare Christiaan Barnard Memorial Hospital in Cape Town, having also worked from 1998 – 2012 at the Vincent Pallotti Hospital in the same city.

Dr Vosloo maintains close ties with our university and has quite a number of additional roles to that of surgeon:

• member of the Council of the UFS;
• UFS Council Representative in the Senate;
• member of the Standing Advisory Committee of the School of Medicine, UFS;
• Kovsie Alumnus of the Year (1989);
• member of the Provincial Department of Health;
• Africa representative for the Paediatric Cardiac Intensive Care Society; and
• founding member of the World Society for Paediatric and Congenital Heart Surgery.

“I have always been proud of the medical training I received at Kovsies. I have worked and visited many institutions across the world and never felt less qualified. In fact, all the places I have worked and went to had high regard for the training I received and also accepted me in that way.

“I think the Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery at the UFS does some ground-breaking research that the university can truly be proud of,” Dr Vosloo says.

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