Strength in Struggle

For many, high school is a time of discovery where teenagers explore the world and build their own unique identity.

Sofia Casanova, struggled with this stage more than most due to her battle with depression. Now that time has past, it is this struggle that has made her exactly who she is today–strong and independent.

Follow her path here.


‘Study’ breaks

The pool table-the centre of 'study' time
The pool table-the centre of ‘study’ time


Three hour break.


“I have a three hour break to do all my uni work”—said the naive first year uni student.

This very spacious break doesn’t seem to be long enough! The books, pens and laptops are tucked away and temporarily forgotten replaced with chatter, food and pool—the best past times.

After just five weeks, I now know that this beloved Monday morning break is no longer utilised for proactive students wishing to complete their work. Yet, it is but an opportunity to socialise with new friends and play a game of pool where everyone gets really competitive—not that I’ve ever one a game of pool.


When the blue bus shunts toward us, its the start of a new day

Reaching for the 'stop' button can be almost impossible on a crowded bus
Reaching for the ‘stop’ button can be almost impossible on a crowded bus

3:45pm and we’re still waiting.

The bus appears–late as usual at this time.

A misshapen line forms where its familiar to get shoved back and forth, poked and squished in the effort to secure a seat on the hour long commute from Wollongong to Campbeltown.

As more people pile onto the bus, the floor becomes an inviting place to sit and retreat. The bus is filled with chatter whilst two performance students belt out tunes to beloved songs enticing others to join in.

Headphones are plugged in–trying to overpower the bus drivers awful taste in music.

Welcome to the next three years of University life.


Even though the place changes, the road remains the same.

"Moving is great, I get to see all sides of life"--Paige Mott
“Moving is great, I get to see all sides of life”–Paige Mott

After having her life in Sydney uprooted to move to Wagga Wagga then to Bega, eighteen-year old Paige Mott finds herself on the sunny coast of Wollongong.

After living in four polar opposite cities swaping the overtowering buildings for a vast range of farms and cattle in pursuit of her families job prosperity, Paige has decided to forge her own road—completely and utterly unique.

“It’s different… good… I get to find my own way.”

Paige is now set in full motion upon her path at UOW and her degree majoring in journalism. Living by herself is a definite change, one that will allow her to grow and discover her identity.

Follow Paige’s path here.


Life entails crooked roads and straight runs.

"Everyone needs that go-to place where its just them and their element"--Luke Simon
“Everyone needs that go-to place where its just them and their element”–Luke Simon

Life can become chaotic, fulfilling and sometimes just a little bit overwhelming. In order to grow and embrace all that life has to offer, there must be a grounded constant—a sanctuary.

Lucky, basketball and photography are two elements where nineteen year old Luke Simon finds himself at home. It is with these where he is able to “identify himself as a member of the world, and ultimately be content with his existence.”

“Basketball stood out as that go-to activity to detatch myself from life. Photography runs parallel to that”

As Luke’s identity began to develop he faced challenges in life; where he found himself drawn to these passions completely.

Follow Luke’s path here.


Free to take any road

2015-04-08 20.21.21[1]
“Let me climb this rock first”–Georgia Stjelia
As children we are told the sky is the limit. This was no different for eighteen-year old Georgia Stjelia as her parents provided her with tools for exploring the depths of the world–her identity.

Free spirited and opinionated, Georgia follows an unearthed path rather than merging onto the congested and uniformed path that many in society today choose to take.

“My parents always told me: don’t let someone tell you who you are, you’ll figure that out on your own.”

Sometimes that might mean embarking upon unfamiliar terrain, treading water and uncertainty but in the end the view is great and one can look back upon an journey of adventure.

Follow Georgia’s path here.

BCM110, BCM112, JRNL101

Current intermission

Wake up call at 6am.

Fully occupied bus.

Holding on for dear life as the  bus shunted toward uni.

Welcome to the next 3 years!IMG_20150226_145325

As a first year, the first day at university is different for everyone, mine however was a mix of excitement and expectation.

Within the four month intermission–or much needed break from the HSC–many people reinvented themselves rendering their “old” identity as a thing of the past looking to the future with a new shade upon their head, or a fake tan, 3 times darker than their skin colour. Others came out of their shell whilst some became introverted.

I however didn’t deviate from the path that I was on and the identity I had forged over the last 18 years.

So, Hola!

My name is Monique Lombardo. I am a first year student at University of Wollongong studying a bachelor of communication and media majoring in journalism.

Here’s just a little bit about me…

I am 18 years old and have the birth sign of twins–the gemini. I live at Narellan so that means I need to commute by bus to get to uni! For as long as I can remember I have been a dancer across most genres. As time went on and the natural process of growing up took place, I decided that it wasn’t  profession that I wanted to pursue.

Here I am, currently undertaking BCM112, BCM110 and JRNL101. I want to take these classes to challenge my ideas of the world and broaden my knowledge of the changes in media.

Why journalism?

I love taking preconceived ideas or notions and adding a spin thus providing a different insight into an already stressed topic. It is this that I believe will contribute to the change in media in this era.