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Winter Term break is here!

Rest, recharge and have some fun

February 16, 2023 — 

Winter Term break is here! Take a well-deserved break to rest and recharge your batteries. This week is a great time to catch up on your studies while practicing self-care, and getting what your mind and body need.

Here are a few ideas to get you started:

Get outdoors. The winter weather has been mostly reasonable this year, which leaves lots of opportunities to enjoy the outdoors. Bring your skates to the Duckworth Quad and take some time to skate right on campus! The Faculty of Kinesiology and Recreation Management has also arranged free, freshly-groomed cross country ski trails on the Southwood Lands at the Fort Garry Campus, where everyone can access these trails with their own equipment. For those who don’t have their own equipment, Winnipeg Trails’ Winterpeg project is also making its way around the city with the free mobile ski library and a few free community winter events. People can borrow skis, snowshoes, kick sleds, and wheel blades for people who use wheelchairs, all with the vision of making outdoor recreation more accessible for all.

Visit The Forks for river skating trails and rentals, or try any of Winnipeg’s urban parks and trails for a nice walk. Other winter programming and events are also offered by FortWhyte Alive and Oak Hammock Marsh all winter long.

Connect with your peers. Engage with other UM community members through a variety of events:

  • The International Centre is hosting a weekly conversation group for international students. It’s a great chance to further explore Canadian culture as students continue to settle in and make new connections. Every Wednesday, the group meets in the International Centre (541 UMSU University Centre) at 1:30 p.m. before heading out to explore a different location on campus.
  • Join SAGE Café, an informal gathering for current and prospective Indigenous graduate students to make connections with others. The group meets virtually on Wednesdays from 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m.
  • Attend a virtual 2S Sharing Circles and Talking Circles, open to people who identify as 2SLGBTQ+ and allies on February 21, 2023 from 1:00 to 2:00 p.m.
  • The Indigenous Student Centre is also inviting students, staff, faculty and community to join a virtual Sharing Circle with an Elder on Wednesdays from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m., and an in-person Sharing Circle with an Elder on Thursday sat 11:30 a.m.

Stay active, indoors. Whether you’d like to refresh your fitness regimen or try something new, there are options for everyone! Recreation Services offers virtual health and fitness resources to help you move your body and get some exercise in the comfort of your own home. You can also visit UM’s sport and recreation facilities on campus with state-of-the-art equipment and spaces.  

Explore the province. Entry to all Manitoba provincial parks is free in February! The Manitoba government is encouraging all Manitobans to take advantage of the beauty of nature and celebrate winter in any of our provincial parks. Immerse yourself in nature and try your hand at skiing, fat biking, snowshoeing, hiking, fishing and more. Spruce Woods Provincial Park was recently designated as the province’s first Dark-Sky Preserve, allowing park visitors to take in the most awe-inspiring views of the night sky and the northern lights. You can also challenge the Snow Maze at A Maze in Corn, the world’s largest snow maze, and take a look at snow carvings, sit by a bonfire, slide down the snow mountain and enjoy other games outdoors.

Check out an event. It’s a great time to be a tourist in your own home! There are many social and cultural events being offered throughout the city at this time of year. Festival du Voyageur runs from February 17-26 and is enjoyed by many. Other options include seeing a Manitoba Moose game, or visiting the Winnipeg Art Gallery, the Canadian Museum of Human Rights where admission is reduced to $5 in February, the Manitoba Museum, the Assiniboine Park Zoo or the recently opened The Leaf.

Give back to the community by volunteering. Your time and effort can make a significant difference in our community. Harvest Manitoba is an excellent option, offering flexibility with duration and the tasks you can participate in. You can also consider other local organizations, a community centre and other opportunities with Volunteer Manitoba. Contact Career Services to further explore volunteer opportunities and its part in your success!

Keep up with your studies. Keep in mind that all UM students can access academic supports across a variety of skills to set you up for more success. Study spaces at UM Libraries will also remain open, and UM Librarians will continue to help students with any resources you’re looking for. If you prefer to study with others to help stay focused, Virtual Study Hall sessions are still running on Thursday evenings and Saturday afternoons.

It’s a great time to take a breath and check in with yourself. Remember that a variety of supports are available to you when you need them. Celebrate yourself, enjoy the sunshine, and prioritize your physical and mental wellness to feel refreshed this Winter Break!

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