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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

Mandela statues and the issue of public representation
2015-09-04

   

Prof Grant Parker, Associate Professor of Classics and Co-Director of the Centre for African Studies at Stanford University, USA, presented a public lecture on the Bloemfontein Campus on 27 August 2015, in which he explored the topic of ”Memorialising Mandela after Rhodes Must Fall”. What stories do the multitude of Mandela statues tell us about the man? Our society? Ourselves? These were some of the questions Prof Parker addressed during his lecture.

Paradoxes
Prof Parker discussed some of the paradoxes presented by the Mandela statues. The huge 9m high Mandela statue at the Union Buildings in Pretoria does not necessarily reflect his humility. Iconic statues strewn across the world do not reveal Madiba’s appeal. “Madiba’s charm,” Prof Parker said, “was all about his ability to relate to people of very different backgrounds. People who were his enemies would – to their surprise – find a humanity they were not expecting. It’s very hard to reconcile that with the colossal statues.”

Rhodes Must Fall
On the topic of the Rhodes Must Fall campaign, Prof Parker said that “the debates around it seem to express the frustration of deepening equality in general and lack of demographic change.” He also believes that, although the campaign centres on statues, there are much deeper issues at play that need to be addressed.

Artists should be part of the conversation
Prof Parker also advocated that artists’ voices should be incorporated into the creative processes of public art. “There is a much greater need for creative artists,” he concluded, “to be part of conversations, not only about what we as South Africans want to commemorate, but how we do that. I would very strongly suggest that this be done by non-figural representations.”

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