Studying abroad for a semester is a great opportunity for university students. Upon starting an ACICIS semester, a new environment with new cultures can be exciting for students, but daunting at the same time. Therefore an integral part of an ACICIS semester, is the four-day orientation ACICIS provides at the beginning of the semester.

In Semester 1, 2016 (Semester 42) we welcomed 47 students from 16 Australian universities in Yogyakarta and Bandung. These students are undertaking in-country ACICIS programs namely Flexible Language Immersion Program (FLIP) and Development Studies Immersion Program (DSIP) at Universitas Gadjah Mada, Indonesian Business, Law and Society (IBLS) at Universitas Islam Indonesia, and International Relations Program (IRP) and West Java Field Study Program (WJFS) at Universitas Parahyangan Bandung (more details on our Semester 42 intake can be found here).

ACICIS orientation is comprised of a range of sessions to help our students settle in their new cities; from health and security to sessions on studying in Indonesia. Our ACICIS Semester 42 orientation in Bandung kicked off on 21 January 2016 at Graha Ciumbuleuit Hotel until 24 January 2016. Yogyakarta students’ orientation commenced the following week on 31 January 2016 until 4 February 2016. To wrap up our Yogyakarta orientation, ACICIS invited Yogyakarta leading NGOs to our “NGO Fair” at Universitas Gadjah Mada, where our students could explore volunteering and internship opportunities with them during their semester in Yogyakarta.

During orientation, ACICIS enlists the help of pendampings, or student budies, who assist our new students to settle in Indonesia. These pendampings are our students’ first friends – they are experts in finding great kosts (boarding house) in the city, showing them cool places to hang out and where to find the best martabak (traditional pancake) in town. These friendships often remain beyond the ACICIS orientation, and even beyond their semester in Indonesia.

We wish all our Semester 42 students a happy semester here in Indonesia. Good luck and semoga sukses!