If someone asked you what college life is about, what comes to mind? Lectures and tutorials? Assignments, exams and getting good grades?  

Although those things are important, there is more to college life than just the pursuit of academic achievements. It is a place where you get to meet people from all around the world giving you opportunities to gain new perspectives in life. It is a time of making new friends, exploring the local community, learning how to take care of yourself and improving your wellbeing to cope with all different situations including times of stress. 

Wellbeing is about your overall development and quality of life. It encompasses all aspects of your life – physical, social, emotional and mental state. Having positive wellbeing leads to improved academic achievement, enhanced mental health and responsible personal choices.    

The top 3 ways to improve student wellbeing at college are:

  1. Social connection 
  2. Helping others and
  3. Make time for stress-relief activities.  

1. Social connection

As an international student, you may not know anyone when you arrive in Australia, and it can be hard for some people to make their first friend on campus. At Adelaide College, the student services team understands the importance of forming friendships early as it helps students feel more settled and happier in their new learning environment.

The Social Club was developed as a place where current students could meet and form friendships and together, create and organise events on and off campus for the whole college community.

Every month, the Social Club runs a special event. It can be an excursion to Youth Week or a Wine Tour, celebrating a special event such as Harmony Day, a party celebrating multiculturalism, or stress relief activities such as pot painting, art and dance therapy.

These activities give students a well-deserved break from studying and allows time for them to relax, enjoy the city they live in and improve their mental health.

The University of Adelaide also have over 130 clubs and associations you can join. Being part of a club is a great way to make new friends who share the same hobbies, interests and goals as you.

2. Helping others 

Helping people can give you a sense of purpose and make your community a better place. 

The Social Club has a partnership with Scots Church nearby that focuses on community outreach. Here, students help with charity fundraising by selling food and other items for example running a bake sale for Australia’s Biggest Morning tea that raises funds for cancer research. Volunteering in community outreach also provides you opportunities to meet with local Australians, be more familiar with the Australian culture and improve your English skills. 

You can learn about volunteering opportunities such as working at the local Op Shop (second hand store) where you can develop skills such as customer service, organisation and communication skills. 

Being part of community events builds skills that may not necessarily be developed in class such as social entrepreneurship, informal conversation skills, and empathy. You will find that being involved in activities that contribute positively to society will help improve your emotional wellbeing.  

3. Make time for stress relief activities

Studying, completing assignments and doing exams can be a time of anxiety and exhaustion so it is important to do some form of stress relief activity each day.

Here’s a list of activities to help relieve stress and improve your wellbeing:

  • Be active

Go to the university gym, walk around the neighbourhood, do yoga or play a sport. Even just 30 minutes a day of exercise can help reduce stress levels.

  • Eat well

Even when your schedule is busy, try not to eat too much processed foods but instead eat nutritious food such as lean meats, fruits and vegetables. You will feel healthy and more energised.

  • Reduce your caffeine intake

Coffee and energy drinks stimulates your central nervous system for a short period of time. For sustainable energy, drink plenty of water or eat a piece of fruit.

  • Be mindful

Be aware of your surroundings instead of lost in your thoughts or your to-do list.

  • It’s okay to say ‘no’.  

If you are overloaded with assignments and tasks, it’s okay to say no to another task or event so that you can have more time to rest.  

  • Listen to gentle music 

Classical music is the most relaxing.  

  • Limit phone and screen time 

The online world is a busy world which makes it hard for your brain to switch off and relax. The glare from the screens can also tire your eyes. Try to limit your screen time whenever possible.  

  • Spend more time outside in nature 

Fresh air and natural surroundings are very calming to the body. 

The University of Adelaide’s Wellness hub provide advice and resources for all aspects of mental, emotional and body health.  

The student support team are available to help you with anything related to your studies and personal challenges. 


At the University of Adelaide College, we want to make sure you know what it’s all about and how you can help yourself and find the right support to make the most of your overseas experience. Our student services team are happy to help you adjust to life here and help you with any personal or study challenges.