Q: Why did you decide to undertake the ACICIS program?
I wanted to pursue Indonesian language study in-country and from all reports from others and my own research, doing that with ACICIS seemed to be the best and most organised way to go.
Q: What classes are you currently enrolled in?
I’m enrolled in 5 different Bahasa Indonesia units at UGM’s language faculty INCULS, along with a Javanese arts and culture unit focused on Gamelan music.
Q: Are you involved in any clubs/societies at the university?
Not as yet, but I’m loving playing futsal with Indonesian and ACICIS students regularly.
Q: How will your proficiency in Indonesian Language gained through the Flexible Language Immersion Program influence your future career or study?
I expect the language proficiency I’ll undoubtedly gain through studying here with ACICIS to be the most important skill in helping me define and achieve my future goals. Along with opening up a whole new Indonesia and new depth of understanding about it, becoming fluent in Indonesian will give me immense personal satisfaction through bilingualism.
Q: How different is in-country Indonesian language learning to your previous experiences in an Australian classroom environment?
Vastly different. The immersive experience can be challenging initially but out of your comfort zone is where real progress is made. The amount of new vocabulary, conversation and pragmatic knowledge you experience in one day is equal to a week at university back home.
Q: What do you like to do in your spare time in Yogyakarta?
Cycle, explore, eat delicious food, play futsal, do private languages classes, chat with local crew. You can do nothing or do heaps, both are good in Jogja.
Q: Are you undertaking an internship or volunteering while in Indonesia?
I am, but with a full year at UGM ahead of me I’m yet to confirm these roles. However, there seems to be a number of interesting organisations and opportunities to get involved with in Jogja.
Q: Favourite Indonesian food/ Favourite place to eat?
In the mornings, Rumah Makan Flamboyan. Rice, various delicious tofu, tempe and vegetable dishes, topped off with fried banana and an iced milo. Treat. For dinner you can’t go past a good Nasi Goreng. Cholesterol levels are probably on the march but I can’t deny the taste.
Q: Favourite Indonesian word/phrase?
“Piye kabare?” – learn a bit of Javanese on top of your Indonesian and watch the locals’ faces register surprise and delight when you drop it. Priceless.
Q: What places in Indonesia have you visited during your semester so far?
Nowhere yet, but Magelang, Bali and Batu Karas are on the cards in the next month.