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 Read the story of Odanta, an international student at the University of Adelaide , who, despite the global crisis of the Covid-19 epidemic, was able to achieve great success in balancing his health, life, university studies, and work via the Internet during the health ban imposed in all of Australia .

What are you studying now in Australia?

I am currently studying for a bachelor's degree in the Faculty of Science at the University of Adelaide, Australia.

How do you find student life during the global COVID-19 pandemic?

The life of the students has undoubtedly been turned upside down. There are no longer interactive lectures in the halls, as before, face-to-face, and social communication between friends and colleagues was negatively affected, as communication and communication between them decreased from the past.

The university administration has resorted to an innovative technological solution, and the ways and means of studying on campus have changed so that everything becomes online. Our professors and university administration are constantly rearranging tools and making efforts to make the distance learning path as efficient as possible. Recently, for example, they have started giving live lectures online on our regular weekly schedule as before, which I find very interesting and impressive.

What are the biggest obstacles in front of you in this new system?

What worries me the most in the current period is the relentless attempt to balance completing my studies properly online with completing my practical training program from home.

What are your most important tips for others to maintain their mental health?

For me, I consider the most important factor to be eating a healthy, balanced and beneficial diet, as this has a great impact on general and psychological health.

Secondly, you must set yourself a clear plan to carry out your work and avoid distractions.

Thirdly, always and regularly communicate with your loved ones, family, friends and teachers through video calls on the Internet.

Fourth, discover your passions, inclinations, and skills through some hobbies and activities that can be practiced at home, such as reading, gardening, or playing board games, chess, and many others.

Finally, you must exercise at home daily and regularly to maintain your physical health and to break the long and continuous working hours at home.

What did you learn about yourself and your personality during the current period?

The main thing I was surprised about is that I found myself being able to cook some really delicious dishes and food. Last Easter I made a dinner and it turned out to be a really good meal. I never imagined I would be able to cook it so well.

I also discovered that I have the ability to adapt to different situations! During my childhood studies in my home country of Sri Lanka, I relied on face-to-face study with the teacher, and I had never studied remotely using the Internet. Without the current COVID-19 pandemic, I would not have had the opportunity to experience distance education.

I struggled a bit at first during the first weeks of immersion in this new experience for me, but gradually got used to it day by day and began to excel in this mode of modern study.

What hobbies, skills and potentials have you acquired?

I have developed a lot of cooking skills and tried many delicious recipes throughout the lockdown period. I had had an internship opportunity through my University of Adelaide, but I thought it would fail because of the pandemic. Despite this, my university made it possible for me to participate in this online training program.

As a result of this great move, I was able to develop my skills to work from home along with other skills required for a science student.

In addition to that, I also started a gym training regimen at home in order to maintain my physical health, by also keeping it at a good level by avoiding eating junk food that is harmful to health, and replacing it with healthy food that I cooked myself.

What are you most looking forward to in the future?

I really can't wait to go back to my university, my friends, my colleagues and my professors, and I want to go back to the gym to burn more of those calories our bodies gained during the COVID-19 pandemic.