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It's been an unprecedented few weeks... Events started to be cancelled, our university switched to online teaching and then a nationwide lockdown. The main thing is to look after own health and to help our NHS by #stayingathome! It's important to try to look after your mental health and wellbeing, now we're staying home. One of the most positive things is to get out in the fresh air once a day. This is a photo that our #ARUAlumni Officer took whilst out on her exercise break. Do share any photos you take whilst out for a walk with #ARUTogether! Here are some tips for wellbeing from the NHS: 1. Stay connected with people Maintaining relationships with people is important for our wellbeing, so think about how you can stay in touch with friends and family while needing to stay at home. You could try phone calls, video calls or social media instead of meeting in person. 2. Talk about your worries It's normal to feel a bit worried, scared or helpless about the current situation. Remember: it is OK to share your concerns with others you trust – and doing so may help them too. 3. Support and help others Helping someone else can benefit you as well as them, so try to be a little more understanding of other people's concerns, worries or behaviours at this time. 4. Look after your body Our physical health has a big impact on how we feel. Try to eat healthy, well-balanced meals, drink enough water and exercise regularly. You can leave your house, alone or with members of your household, for 1 form of exercise a day – like a walk, run or bike ride. But make you keep a safe 2-metre distance from others. 5. Do things you enjoy Focusing on your favourite hobby, relaxing indoors or connecting with others can help with anxious thoughts and feelings. If you can't do the things you enjoy because you're staying at home, think about how you could adapt them, or try something new. There are lots of free tutorials and courses online, and people are coming up with inventive new ways to do things, like hosting online quizzes and concerts. #aruanimals #essexcountryside #stayathomesavelives #swansonalake #aruproud #clapforthenhs #clapforkeyworkers #outforawalk

To finish off our #ARUinLove stories we're bringing you our wonderful Alumni Officer Kim's story of how she met her husband Evan. "Evan and I met after a chance meeting on ARU’s Chelmsford campus back at the beginning of 2017, when he was in the middle of his PhD and I was working in The MedBIC at the time. We clicked straight away and began to spend more and more time together, FaceTiming almost every night of our relationship. After meeting each other’s families, them meeting each other (slightly trickier when one family lives almost 3000 miles away!) and me proofreading his PhD a few Christmases ago, Evan proposed in January last year. We got married in November, moved in together, Evan submitted his PhD with final corrections and we flew to Nigeria for his brother’s wedding all within a month, making 2019 an incredible year. I’m incredibly grateful for his support, not only for me, but of my whole family through a difficult time a few years ago. He’s not just my husband, he’s my best friend, and I wouldn’t have it any other way." #valentinesday2020 #valentinesday #metatuni #couplegoals #angliaruskin #aruproud #arualumni #angliaruskinuniversity #lovestories #cambridge #chelmsford #aruchelmsford

Faye tells us how she met her husband of 25 years through ARU! This is Faye and Gary's story. "I secured a place doing music degree at Cambridge College of Arts and Technology (the forerunner to ARU) in 1989. When not studying, I worked in The Anchor on Silver Street which was where I met my husband, Gary. He had just moved up from London and worked around the corner from the pub. It was the start of my final year and my friend and I had signed up to a fresher’s week, 3-legged pub crawl. We invited Gary and his friend to join us. Not being students, they didn’t quite grasp the concept so leisurely had a pint in every pub – they were a little worse for wear when they eventually got back to The Tram Depot. But it can’t have gone that badly because we celebrated 25 years of marriage in 2019 and have stayed in Cambridge all this time. Gary set up, run and sold a business. I worked globally for blue chip companies and start-ups, and then set up my own Communications and PR company in Cambridge back in which is going from strength to strength. Other than a degree, you never know what path being at ARU will take you on – we live, work and play here and I have fond memories every time I drive past the campus on East Road (which is very often!). As a businesswoman it’s also important to me to continue to support the ARU community – I currently have a part-time employee from ARU and we also take on work experience people from ARU too." #valentinesday2020 #valentinesday #metatuni #couplegoals #angliaruskin #aruproud #arualumni #angliaruskinuniversity #lovestories #cambridge #chelmsford #arucambridge

We're continuing with our #ARUinLove stories this weekend... because love is still in the air! This is Ashley and Lewis's story. "Lewis and I met at ARU in 2012. We both spent the first two years of our Business Management degree course at Seevic college (now USP) through the University’s partner college scheme. There were six of us in our seminar classes and we all became really close. Lewis and I became best friends and we had all the same lectures together. We lived about ten minutes away from each other and spent many late nights/early mornings in the library spurring each other on to complete (last minute) assignments. After three years our course was finished and we watched each other graduate before it was time to enter the big world! Two years after leaving ARU, we moved in together and Lewis asked me to marry him in Disneyland with Minnie Mouse by our side. Fast forward another two years and we were getting married with two of our original class there, one as best man and one as an usher! Degrees aren’t the easiest to get through but we survived it, made so many memories and I gained a husband and some life long friends." #valentinesday2020 #valentinesday #metatuni #couplegoals #angliaruskin #aruproud #arualumni #angliaruskinuniversity #lovestories #cambridge #chelmsford #arucambridge

''We met in Morgan's third week of her Master's program, no where else but in the ever cute Helmore Gym of ARU's Cambridge Campus" Vlad @vladcatusanuwxn and Morgan's #ARUinLove story! "We were there training with our volleyball club, but I was injured, that's why I was separated from the group, but I had heard about this new player that was supposed to be the best athlete we ever had! So from the get-go, due to my competitive spirit and ego, I saw Morgan as someone to challenge that I can prove I was the better athlete, haha. Because of my attitude we actually didn't get to properly introduce each other and talk for another two weeks when Morgan was somehow forced into this Sports Clubs meeting that I was attending. That was the first time we got to chat and it was a good time for me to find out her workout plans and fitness test results so I could get myself to outwork her in the gym. Again, silly me, I was so unaware of the fact that she liked me. As weeks went by, we were sometimes bumping into one another at practices or games when Morgan was trying to be just a good friend and get to know me, but I was really going to a very busy period of my life in which I was very dismissive to everything and everyone that wasn't strictly related to academia, sports or my career. We would meet at the gym to work out, but instead we would end up just laying on the mattresses and talking for a couple of hours until we had to go to our lectures. And this happened two to three times a week for almost two months, deep down inside I admit that I had days when I was just going there hoping to see her so we could talk." Read Vlad's full story by going to our blog: social.anglia.ac.uk/aruinlove #valentinesday2020 #valentinesday #metatuni #couplegoals #angliaruskin #aruproud #arualumni #angliaruskinuniversity #lovestories #cambridge #chelmsford #bulgaria #arucambridge

"I wouldn’t have it any other way as our love - it just transcends time - it’s an instinctive feeling for both of us that we just love each other and want each other." SO CUTE! #ARUInLove Nathen and Laura's story: "I transferred to ARU in my third year, which was terrifying, coming into a space in which these students have built their friendships over two/three years, "I’ll 100% be the outcast", I thought. However, one day I met Laura; she took me under her wing and slowly but surely I convinced her to take me into her heart. We fell in love so fast neither of us can believe it’s been over a year since we first met and I wouldn’t have it any other way as our love - it just transcends time - it’s an instinctive feeling for both of us that we just love each other and want each other. Laura and I are currently looking for a place to live together and we also both work in schools. She works in a primary school as a 1:1 SEN learning support assistant and I do the same but in a secondary school. Please our share our stories! Tag @angliaruskin on Twitter and Instagram and #ARUinLove!" #valentinesday2020 #valentinesday #metatuni #couplegoals #angliaruskin #aruproud #arualumni #angliaruskinuniversity #lovestories #cambridge #chelmsford #bulgaria #arucambridge