Hello all!

The bitter cold is beginning to abate and a long weekend is here. I hope you all take some time for a respite from studying and spend some time with your loved ones – including yourself. It’s all about balance. Disciplined habits of mind for your academic success, relaxation, time for daydreaming, creativity. This weekend I plan to bake some ginger cookies and take a walk in Fish Creek. How will you mark the weekend and find some balance?

Food Resources

Everyone should be able to get healthy food, regardless of income and ability.
If you need food, you can reach out to Leftover Rescue Food at https://rescuefood.ca/fresh-deliveries/
The cost to get healthy food delivered is pay what you can. Leftovers does not ask customers for proof of income. Anyone can get food from them.

Microwaves Available Again on Campus

Microwaves are available again in the common areas of the classroom building near the photo copier and in Le Fort main floor across the bistro for students to use. Thank you to Facilities for making this happen to support students who are studying on campus. Remember to clean the microwaves according to the posted protocols!

Peer Mentoring Group Sessions

On Friday, February 19th from 3-4pm, Daniel, one of our Peer Mentors, will be leading a group hangout where he will discuss Test Taking Strategies. Join to hear and discuss best practices in preparation for midterms and finals. There are still spots available and you can register by going to ss.stmu.ca < Classes < LC Bookings. The following Friday, February 26th Daniel will lead another group hangout from 3-4pm where he will lead a discussion called Help! How Do I Write an Essay? Join to learn strategies on and tips for working through the essay writing process. There are still spots available and you can register by going to ss.stmu.ca < Classes < LC Bookings.

Speaking Peace in a Climate of Conflict: A Border Walkers Community Conversation with Marilyn McEntyre.

In our culture of disinformation, polarization, and alignment around party lines, how do we use words to cultivate community, clarity, and compassion? We are pleased to welcome Marilyn McEntyre, author of 15 books (including Caring for Words in a Culture of Lies and Speaking Peace in a Climate of Conflict), who has thought carefully about these questions. As both a longtime professor of American literature and the professor of medical humanities at UC Davis and the UC Berkeley-UCSF Joint Medical Program, she is uniquely qualified to speak to our interdisciplinary approach at St. Mary’s. Join Daniel Melvill Jones on Friday, February 19th at 6:30pm Mountain Time, live on Teams, as we host an interactive community conversation with Marilyn McEntyre. Register here: http://borderwalkers.eventbrite.ca/

10 Time Management Tips for University Students

Time management is increasingly challenging for adult learners who juggle different priorities in life such as academic studies, work, and family. Time management plays an important role for university students, because the ability to prioritise is the key to maintaining a harmonious and balanced lifestyle. Good time management brings plentiful benefits that will make things easier for you, your friends, and family.

  • Write a “to-do” list

    A “to-do” list serves as a reminder of the important tasks that you need to prioritise. Tackle the most important tasks first. You should post the list in a prominent place with easy access such as on a bulletin board, refrigerator, calendar, mirror, Post-It notes, or on your electronic device.

  • Prioritise your work constantly

    Decide what important task is to be done first. The use of a weekly planner can help remind you of your short-term goals such as reviewing lectures and studying for exams. The planner can also help organise your non-academic tasks that you need to accomplish so you can have a clear picture of what your day/week is going to be like. A yearly planner helps you plan your work over a semester and prepares you months ahead for important deadlines and upcoming events.

  • Find a dedicated study space and time

    Determine a place to study where it is free of distraction from friends, family members, or hobbies. Fight the urge to use your cell phone or engage in text messaging and social networking. And if your designated space is occupied, plan a change of venue such as the library or the local coffee shop.

  • Budget your time to make the most of it

    Creating a weekly schedule will help you determine how much time you spend on your daily/weekly academic and non-academic activities, and how much extra time you have before adding any additional commitments. Include some time in your schedule for relaxation to clear your mind.

  • Work out your optimum study method

    Determine the best time and situations for you to study and work efficiently. Whether studying at home with music as a background or quietly in the library, knowing your study preference will make you an efficient and effective student.

  • Be realistic about the time you spend studying

    Academic work takes a lot of time to do – researching, taking notes, writing reports, and doing assignments. Put extra time into thinking, analysing, and understanding your work, but try not to be a perfectionist. Be realistic about the time you will spend on each task.

  • Focus on long-term goals

    Set your sights on where you want to be and what you hope to accomplish by establishing specific, measurable, and realistic goals. Prioritising and scheduling time to complete your immediate and short-term goals will lead you to the successful accomplishment of your long-term goals.

  • Solicit help when you need it

    Let family members know your study schedule and don’t hesitate to seek help. If family members understand and support your academic goals, tackling college life will be easier for you.

  • Don’t be afraid to say “No”

    Saying no is sometimes difficult to do. However, if you need to study for an exam or finish an assignment, you have to learn how to say no. Decline politely and be clear with your reason. Negotiate a time when you are free to comply with the request or to socialise with your friends.

  • Review your notes regularly

    Review your notes before classes to refresh your memory of the topics previously discussed. After the class, re-write or make additional notes that you missed. Reviewing your notes will help you prepare for the next class and to think of questions you may ask for clarification.

Dr. Glen Chilton, Professor Emeritus, St. Mary’s University, “Tramping in the Footsteps of Darwin and Wallace”

4th Annual Darwin Day Lecture

As I write this, I am watching and listening to my friend Glen Chilton, former Biology professor at StMU, and now a world famous author and presenter. Broadcasting from Australia where he lives, Dr. Chilton offers us a riveting talk on his travels in the footsteps of Darwin and Wallace. You are as dynamic as ever, Glen, and we are delighted you are still part of our community! Thank you so much for sharing your stories with us and showing us the continuing relevance of science – and storytelling.

Tara Hyland-Russell
Vice-President Academic