Winning on ‘Straya Day

A last minute guide to celebrating Australia Day in Sydney

Aussies are renown straight talkers, especially when it comes to naming our stuff. When a native species of snake is brown, we’ll call it a Brown Snake. When a mountain range appears to have a blue tinge when viewed from afar, we’ll call it the Blue Mountains.

So while the Americans have Independence Day and the French have Bastille Day, we Aussies named our national day of celebration… Australia Day. Tadaaa… we are seriously uncomplicated.

Oh but there are a few exceptions… Aussies can seem pretty elaborate and at times downright complex when it comes to celebrating our public holidays.

Skeptical African Kid MemeSo in the spirit of Australia Day – a celebration of all things great about this country – SIBT Students are proud to present this handy last-minute guide to winning on Australia Day in Sydney.
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UPON ARRIVAL: A blog post for the newcomers

For those of you who are new to SIBT (and possibly new to Australia completely), WELCOME!

(And a friendly hello to those of you returning – hope you are enjoying your break!)

Starting your studies somewhere new can be a daunting process, especially with that massive, scary check list of things you still need to do.   Do not fret!  SIBT students are here to save the day with some information that will make this transition a little easier for you.

Hopefully this blog hasn’t caught you at the airport about to board a plane to Sydney, Australia, with no plan on where you are going to go or stay, but if that is the case hopefully your airport has Wi-Fi (assuming it does if you’re reading this) and you can click away on all these fabulous links.

First of all, let’s get you some ACCOMMODATION.
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Celebrating the end of exams!

CONGRATULATIONS!  Exams are over and it’s time to celebrate. Celebrating doesn’t have to involve a raging party (although it most certainly can) – the main point is that you’ve worked hard over the last few weeks*, and you need to reward yourself appropriately.

*You should have been working hard – if you spent more time looking at kittens on the internet than studying last week, you don’t deserve anything but this disapproving face —————>

After that final exam, you’ll probably feel a number of things all at once: excited, exhausted, sleep deprived, relieved and WILDLY happy they are over. So there will be many different ways you can reward yourself for those epic study efforts. And here they are:

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Surviving a day at the library

The good news? You’ve made it this far without a breakdown and there are only a couple more days of exams left.  Before you can let your hair down and really celebrate, you’ve got to face just a few more days of library lockdown.

To help prepare you for long hours in the confines of the library, I have created a Library Survival Guide. This will allow you make it through the rest of this sickening week – ideally without any outbursts of profanity or stress-related night terrors.
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How to beat the top 5 causes of procrastination


YOU are your own worst enemy when it comes to staying focused. Not only are you contending with thousands of unrelated thoughts in your own head, you are the source of many other distractions.

Maybe you find a mysterious stain on your sweater, only to spend the next half hour brainstorming its origin. Or maybe there’s a thread unravelling that you MUST pull through to the end. In the most extreme case scenario maybe you catch a glimpse of yourself in the mirror, decide to give yourself an impromptu haircut and wind up looking a bit “special” – like you’ve had a nasty run-in with a lawn mower or a pair of children’s scissors.

Solution: Pick a spot on the wall and stare at it when you are trying to focus on something. This is your “study spot”. And avoid mirrors at all costs.
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Studying vs. Weekend

So it’s Friday afternoon, you’re done classes and work for the day, and you are heading home.  BUT… you have an exam on Monday. And Tuesday. (Maybe even Saturday…eww).  Come to think of it, next week is a minefield.

The weekend is studying’s natural enemy. At the beginning, you’re convinced that you’ve got the willpower to lock yourself in your bedroom for 48 hours straight. Come Sunday, you’re staring at that untouched textbook and contemplating life as a hermit in the forest.

Nobody wants to spend their glorious free time studying*, but there are certain steps you can take to ensure a pain-free yet productive weekend – here’s what to do (and what not to do) in the lead up to finals:

(*if you do, this blog is not relevant to you – please stop reading and leave immediately with the knowledge that you disgust me.)
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State of Origin Supporter Tips

To be blatantly honest, I have little understanding about this so called game of “Rugby League”. If you are anything like me, you watch Rugby League three times a year (Origin time) and feel this is enough to sufficiently class yourself as an expert. Now while I may not be a real expert, I have however become an expert at making people believe I know what I’m talking about. Last night’s game was extremely exciting (a real nail biter) with the Blues coming out on top beating QLD on their home turf 12-8. I made sure to practice all my fake expert techniques and every single one worked a treat.


If you’re new to the whole origin scene, here are my top tips to keep you from looking like a footy fraud (the ultimate crime when watching the Origin at a pub, club or RSL).


Guidelines to follow when watching the next two games:

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How to Keep Yourself at Your Desk When Studying

Honestly, this is literally the biggest feat known to man: the ability to keep oneself at one’s desk for longer than 30 minutes when studying. I have tried and failed many times, however there have been a few glimpses of hope where I have pumped out a solid 60 minutes of study in one go and been incredibly happy with my success.


What I have learnt in my experience is that you have to trick yourself into staying there. There is nothing so appealing about study that would make you want to sit there by your own will, so you need to outsmart yourself with trickery. Sound crazy? Read on.


Successful ways to trick yourself into staying at your desk and studying:

1.       Close all curtains and cover all clocks.

You will be super-duper counterproductive if you time watch.  By using this clever trick (often seen in casinos), time will fly and you won’t even have time to think about that beautiful sunny perfect-beach-day you are missing outside. Hermit yourself up, light a cute candle for ambience and flick on those desk lamps. You’re in for the long haul.


2.       Create a feast

This is by far my most practiced and effective strategy. You first need to elect an amount of time you wish to study for and then prepare a meal that will last you this long.

I find that hot chocolates, hunky sandwiches, any form of dessert, tea and biscuits and last night’s leftovers are fantastic additions to your desk during any study period.

3.       The shut-out technique

This strategy can be unbelievably irritating, however in desperate times we must take desperate measures. Ask your family or housemates to literally ignore you, pretend as if you don’t exist for the amount of time you need to study, e.g. 3 hours. Now, when you try to escape your desk and have that cute procrastination chat with the house member of your choice, they will walk away, leaving you with no choice but to return to your desk and study. Success.


If all else fails, there is an extreme case scenario option. Not for the faint hearted, but designed for those with limited self-control: Tie yourself to your chair, allowing only freedom of movement for your arms so you can write and type.


Happy Studying!

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Speaking “Strayan” 101

Speaking “Strayan” is something us Australians are very proud of, and we can certainly understand why anyone would wish to learn. Look, it’s a complicated language in which there are very few rules, but it does require a comprehensive understanding of short words and twisted sentences. Put them all together and you got the language “strayan”.

Learning another language takes a long time and is often very difficult (as a failed student of year 8 French, I can concur with this statement), so in an effort  to help you learn “Strayan”, I’m just going to throw you the basics. Keep it “short and sweet” as they say.

 Key “Strayan” Words Everyone Should Know:


Roadie: a beverage that is consumed en route.

“Mate, it’s a long walk. I’d bring a roadie or two.”


Sheila: A female. However, if you go around calling every girl you meet Sheila, you’ll probably end up getting slapped.

“I just got slapped by a Sheila!”


Deadset: Another word for seriously or absolutely.

“You got slapped by a Sheila?”
“Yer, deadset!”


Chook: Chicken.

“Love, have you fed the chooks this morning?”


Reckon: Think.

“What do you reckon about Sheila drinking that roadie?”


Rock up: Arrive or turn up.

“Do you reckon he will even rock up tonight?”


Whoop Whoop: Middle of nowhere.

“Mate, he lives in the middle of Whoop Whoop, deadset.” 


No Worries: Not a problem.

“Hey thanks for cookin’ the chook tonight.”
“No worries mate.”


Shindig: Party or event.

“Wanna come over to me place tonight mate?”

“Nah, can’t, I got that shindig at Garys. And I’m not trekking out to Whoop Whoop.”


If you aren’t sure if you’re doing it right, remember this: Two syllables are more than enough for any word, just keep chopping till you get there. Then throw a vowel on the end like “o” or “ie” and you should be right.

Eg.       Dave → Davo

Monday → Mondie

Tracksuit → Trackies

Afternoon → Arvo

Breakfast → Breakie

Barbeque → Barbie

Avocado → Avo

If you can master all of the above, you’ve pretty much got the whole language under your belt. Deadset.

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5 Things You Should Never Do at a Job Interview

Do not, under any circumstances…


Interviewer:  So Jason, tell me a bit about why you are interested in this position.

JasonI dunno man, seems like a pretty exciting gig. YOLO, am I right?  (*attempts high five*)



Interviewer: Why did you leave your previous job?

David: Oh you know, same old story. Boss was a total dickhead. You seem alright, though.



Interviewer: So, do you have any leadership experience?

Ruth: Back when I was living in a small tribe in Hwanuk Nuk Na‘ah (imaginary place), I saved 60 small infants from rising flood waters and rebuilt the town with my bare hands.

Interviewer:  Get out.



Peter: It’s a miracle I made it in on time!  Ate some horrible chicken last night, spent half this morning on the toilet.

Interviewer: Ahem…yes, well then. Let’s get started shall we? (*enthusiastically crosses something off list*)


5)  HIT ON YOUR INTERVIEWER (or the receptionist, or anyone else in the office…)

Interviewer: Hi, my name’s Sarah, I’m the manager here and I’ll be conducting your interview.

John:  Hi Sarah, my name is John but you can call me…tonight.  (*winks*)

Interviewer:  Wow.

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