On 1 – 3 May 2019, ACICIS held the 2019 ACICIS Indonesia Annual Staff Meeting and Retreat in Batu, East Java. The meeting and retreat was attended by 24 ACICIS staff from several cities in Indonesia, Yogyakarta, Jakarta, Bogor and Bandung, and also – for the first time – two ACICIS Secretariat staff members from our Australian offices, in Perth and Melbourne, Megan McPherson and Natassia Bell. The purpose of the annual meeting and retreat is to bring ACICIS staff together to share knowledge, ideas, and experiences to improve ACICIS program management and delivery in the years to come, as well as to strengthen the teamwork of all ACICIS staff – across Indonesia and Australia.

The meeting and retreat was opened on 1 May with a welcoming dinner and opening speech by ACICIS Deputy Resident Director, Ms Janelle May. Following the opening speech, Janelle provided updates on ACICIS program delivery and congratulated several team members on achieving new roles within the organisation.

The second day of the retreat was dedicated to professional and personal development. ACICIS staff were asked to reflect upon what ACICIS does well, what it can do better, and what role they can play in the continued development of ACICIS. Staff discussed several topics relevant to improving ACICIS in the future, such as: Reflection on the 2018 Staff Retreat (led by ACICIS Yogyakarta Program Manager, Ms Sinta Padmi), A Career with ACICIS (led by ACICIS Resident Director, Dr Adrian M. Budiman), Host University & Organisation Maintenance Evaluation (led by ACICIS Stakeholder Relations and Internship Manager, Mr Nurfitra Asa), and Program Management (led by ACICIS Jakarta Program Coordinator, Ms Wilia Pramitasari). ACICIS Australia staff also provided relevant updates from across the channel – Meg brought everyone up to speed on the Secretariat’s marketing campaign and Natassia provided updates to ACICIS’ Member University portfolio.

Staff worked in rotating groups to work through the different topics, discussing challenges and ideas for improvement. It wasn’t all challenges, however – staff were given the opportunity to congratulate themselves and their colleagues on a record high student enrolment number in ACICIS programs in 2018. Staff also had the chance to meet colleagues for the first time – providing an invaluable opportunity to build people-to-people ties with those working towards the same goal.

The final day of the retreat was reserved for team-building activities. For the ACICIS team, this meant games and rafting at Kaliwatu river! The games and rafting were employed to test concentration, trust and kinship. Later that night, ACICIS staff had a closing dinner, where ACICIS Resident Director officially closed the Annual Meeting and Retreat.

A big shout out to all of the ACICIS staff – see you all next year. Tetap semangat!