New Colombo Plan - Connect to Australia’s future - study in the region.

Agriculture Professional Practicum

Marko Rapajic was a participant of the Agriculture Professional Practicum (APP), in 2024. Marko is studying Bachelor of Environment and Sustainability from The Australian National University. Marko received a $4,000 New Colombo Plan Mobility Grant to support his participation in this program.

Q: Why did you decide to undertake the ACICIS internship program?

The ACICIS internship program offered too many reasons for me to undertake it: it was fantastic to learn about agriculture, get some short work experience, explore Indonesia with new friends, learn introductory Indonesian, experience Indonesian culture, and count it all for my studies!

Q: Did you receive a New Colombo Plan Mobility Grant? Do you think the NCP is an important initiative? If yes, why? The NCP is a signature initiative of the Australian Government which aims to lift knowledge of the Indo-Pacific in Australia by supporting Australian undergraduates on experiences such as the Professional Practica.

Yes, I received a New Colombo Plan Mobility Grant. I do think that the NCP is an important initiative. Without the NCP, it would have been much harder to undertake the ACICIS program, so I have the NCP to thank for learning so much about Indonesia and my desire to improve my new introductory Indonesian language skills.

Q: Where did you live in Indonesia (Kos, homestay, hotel, rental etc.)? Any tips for prospective students on finding accommodation?

ACICIS provides hotel accommodation for the first week (I extended for 1 week), which is a great opportunity to meet other students. During the 4 weeks of my internship, I lived in a hotel near my placement, mostly since I enjoyed walking to work every morning.

 Q: How have you found the academic components of this program – i.e. the language classes/seminars?

The language classes were great, and I learned enough Indonesian to get around. The seminars were also equally enjoyable, where I learned about agriculture in Indonesia.

Q: What organisation are you interning with? (Explain your role and responsibilities)

I interned at EcoNusa but mostly worked with Kobumi. I learned a lot about the work that EcoNusa and Kobumi do to support local and indigenous communities in Papua and Maluku.

Q: How have you found the work culture of your host organisation? How is it different to work experience in Australia?

The work culture of my host organisation was great, everyone was friendly, fun and supportive. I found myself doing a lot more learning than working.

Q: What are the main skills you have learnt during your internship?

I learned a lot from placement organisation, which gave me a good understanding of sustainable natural resource management, conservation, and the socio-economic conditions of indigenous and local communities in Indonesia, all while also improving my organizational and communication skills.

Q: What did you get up to in your free-time? i.e. in the evenings and on weekends.

Too many things: explored the malls of Indonesia, visited Bogor National Park, ate dinner after class, went shopping for Batik, visited an aquarium, studied Indonesian … (All with friends of course).

Q: What surprised you about Indonesia? Any new insights?

The amount of fun that I had.

Q: What did you find to be the most rewarding part of this experience?

Honestly, it is hard to single out anything, since the whole program was just fantastic.

Q. Were you able to learn about the Indonesian culture from this program? If yes, how was this achieved?

There were so many ways of learning about Indonesian culture. From learning about it from our teachers and lecturers, to eating street food and food at warungs, or dining at a Padang restaurant and shopping for Batik with Indonesian friends, or talking to local Grab drivers.

Q. How will the internship benefit or influence your future career?

The ACICIS program motivated me to more deeply recognise agriculture/conservation as prospective career field of mine. I definitely believe that my time spent learning at Kobumi will offer invaluable experience in this career field.

Q. Would you recommend this program to your friends?


Q. Favourite Indonesian word/phrase:

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