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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

Prof Tim Murithi calls for Africa to design new global order
2016-06-02

Description: Prof Tim Murithi calls for Africa to design new global order Tags: Prof Tim Murithi doen ’n oproep op Afrika om ’n nuwe wêreldorde te skep

From left: Prof Heidi Hudson, Head of Centre for Africa
Studies (CAS); Prof Tim Murithi, Extraordinary Professor
at CAS; Prof Lucius Botes, Dean of the Faculty of
the Humanities; and Prof Prakash Naidoo, Principal of
Qwaqwa Campus.
Photo: Stephen Collet

“What do Africans have to say about the remaking of the global order?” was the opening question of Prof Tim Murithi’s lecture which was hosted by the Centre for Africa Studies (CAS) of the University of the Free State (UFS) to celebrate Africa Day on 25 May 2016.

The annual Africa Day Memorial Lecture, entitled: Africa and the Remaking of the Global Order, doubled as Prof Murithi’s inaugural lecture. He is CAS’s newly-appointed Extraordinary Professor, as well as the Head of the Justice and Reconciliation in Africa Programme at the Institute for Justice and Reconciliation in Cape Town. He made a compelling argument for the need for Africa to exert an active influence on international narratives of peace, governance, justice, and reconciliation.

“If we are waiting for American leadership to get us out of the quagmire of a situation we are in, we will be waiting for a long time,” said Prof Murithi.

The Head of the Centre, Prof Heidi Hudson, concurred with Prof Murithi’s suggestion of devising African solutions for African problems. She quoted Audre Lorde’s well-known assertion that “The master’s tools will never dismantle the master’s house.”

Remembering 1963
Over five decades ago, on 25 May 1963, the Organisation of African Unity was formed, and was renamed the African Union in 2002. Africa Day marks this pivotal point in the continent’s history. On this day, we reflect on the continent’s journey into democracy, peace, stability and socio-economic development. It is also an opportunity to celebrate African identity and heritage.

Continent-building dialogues
The UFS Sasol Library celebrated Africa Day with a book launch. Facets of Power. Politics, Profits and People in the Making of Zimbabwe's Blood Diamonds by Tinashe Nyamunda is a reflection of some of the challenges that Zimbabwe continues to face. It details the disadvantaged position which the country finds itself in due to greed, maladministration, and corruption, despite possessing large deposits of minerals.

In celebration of Africa Month, CAS has held a series of lectures by esteemed scholars from across the globe.  Earlier in the month, Prof Henning Melber presented lectures on Namibia’s independence and the African middle class. Kevin Bloom and Richard Poplak unpacked the issues surrounding Africa’s continental shift, while Prof Joleen Steyn Kotze focused on the possible fall of the African National Congress.

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