Last semester, from August until December 2023, ACICIS welcomed 23 students in the Flexible Language Immersion Program (FLIP) at Universitas Gadjah Mada (UGM).  Many of them were supported by the Australian Government’s New Colombo Plan (NCP) scholarship. The FLIP program combines Indonesian language classes from INCULS UGM and other regular immersion classes from the Faculty of Cultural Science, Faculty of Economics & Business, and Faculty of Law. Students are supported during ACICIS’ Orientation to select classes based on their language proficiency and areas of interest.

Additionally, FLIP offers students the chance to do a professional placement, or internship, with a local host organisation either in addition to their coursework or over the break between semesters. As an example, Dionisius Grandy from Leiden University interned with WALHI (Wahana Lingkungan Hidup Indonesia), an organisation focused towards Indonesian environmental issues, particularly environmental advocacy.  Allys Hansell from Australian National University interned with CIRCLE Indonesia, a consultancy firm that works with international NGOs and other organisations to make sure their projects are effective in an Indonesian context.

Three days of orientation seminars were held at the beginning of the program to acquaint students with subjects such as interacting with ACICIS staff members, getting accommodation, and Indonesian culture 101. Throughout the semester, ACICIS’ Flip program students were also involved in a variety of activities. Claudia Wijaya was a speaker at the IABC (Indonesian Australia Business Conference) 2023 in Jakarta, and Hammad Shahin and Jade Alexis also attended. Some students also joined university sports clubs. For example, Julia Doherty from the Australian National University and Darcy Tyler from the University of Western Australia joined UGM’s Hockey Club.

This memorable one semester program wrapped up with an INCULS graduation ceremony and ACICIS farewell dinner that was held at the West Lake Hotel, Yogyakarta. At the ACICIS Farewell dinner, Allys Hansell gave a wonderful speech expressing how much she cherished her time spent studying in Indonesia. From her speech as a representative for all of the FLIP students, we hope that they will continue honing their Indonesian language abilities and broadening their scholarly and intercultural perspectives.

ACICIS is proud of the achievements made by all of the students in this short, but meaningful period. We wish all of you the best for the future. Congratulations, and see you on top!