Ross Godwin was a participant in the Indonesian Language Short Course – Session 2 & 3 in 2018 from The University of Western Australia.
Q: Why did you decide to undertake the ILSC?
The opportunity to simultaneously experience the wonders of Indonesia and achieve credit towards my undergraduate degree – specifically two units of my Indonesian second major – with financial support from the government, was simply too good to pass up! Once in a lifetime alright! In the future I have aspirations to use my medicine degree to do meaningful humanitarian work in Indonesia and potentially contribute to healthcare reform. I also want to fast track my study as I have 6 years to qualify as a General Practitioner in Australia!
Q: What did you find to be the most challenging about the ILSC?
Getting here was pretty hard (my case in particular), but otherwise the study load is pretty full on. You have to be prepared and keep up with the homework and assignments every night, otherwise it would be very hard were you to fall behind. For me this was unavoidable as I arrived late missing two days of the course. So reading all that material and completing work retrospectively simultaneous to class was difficult.
Q: How will your proficiency in Indonesian language gained through the ILSC influence your future career or study?
Indonesia feels like a second home when you can speak to people in their own language, so I plan to hopefully study for an entire semester here and go on to make good on my aspirations to work in/with Indonesia to improve health policy and infrastructure.
Q: Have you had previous experience learning Indonesian in Australia? If so, how different is in-country Indonesian language learning to your previous experiences? If not, how do classes in Indonesia compare to classes in Australia?
I studied Indonesia as a minor subject at school from year 3 to 9, then as a WACE ATAR subject in year 10 and 11, followed by a year at UWA as a second major. Studying in-country is incomparably more rewarding and immersive. Being able to practice with the angkota or GO-CAR driver, and your fellow students and the LTC and ACICIS staff is extraordinarily beneficial!
Q: Would you like to return to Indonesia for future study or work?
Q: What did you most enjoy about the course?
Meeting beautiful people, both Indonesian and Australian, then being able to share stories and make new ones together with them. Also the food is mental! Enak Banget!
Q: What do you like to do in your spare time in Salatiga?
I’ve done a bit of shopping for things I didn’t bring and some good batik. I plan to hike the nearby hills and mountains, and visit the nearby lake. I spend a lot of time in discussion with my lovely Homestay Ibu and Pak who are very intelligent and capable.
Q: Favourite Indonesian Food/Favourite place to eat:
At the Homestay! Ibu Titi should be on masterchef – there is something new every meal! Bakmi, bebek bakar dan jus mangga are amongst my top picks.
Q: Favourite Indonesian word/phrase:
“Tidak apa-apa”, as I’m always saying it to Indonesians who are apologising for some miniscule inconvenience to which I seriously reply “its nothing”. A little kindness goes a long way…