By Paula Tsalamangos (Sem 40/Feb 2015)
Flinders University

Looking back at 5 months spent in such a culturally enriched country brings nothing but smiles to my face. At the start of 2015 I couldn’t actually believe that I was about to embark on an incredible 5 month exchange in Yogyakarta, Indonesia.  Waking up in the morning and walking down my street I would be greeted by every Indonesian I walked past. Their great big bright smiles just made the best start to everyday in Yogyakarta. My semester abroad in Indonesia has given me a greater insight into the Indonesian way of life and culture.

The Indonesian Language Teacher Immersion (ILTI) program at Sanata Dharma University was an extremely fascinating experience. Studying at a University for a semester in another country was an experience I would recommend to anyone. I gained a significant insight into the ways and methods of education in Indonesia and I was given the incredibly valuable experience of teaching within the schools of Yogyakarta. The university had a warm welcoming environment by the lecturers and students. I was fortunate enough to ride a scooter to university for a 7am start which was a fun experience. At the beginning knowing that my classes would be taught and conducted in Indonesian was frightening. But it wasn’t long before it became normal and very valuable to my language learning of Bahasa Indonesia.

In summary after spending 5 months abroad in Yogyakarta I have gained an incredible unique experience and I have made many unforgettable memories, met incredible people and gained Indonesian friends who I have since kept in touch with. By completing an exchange in Indonesia you will not only gain a once in a lifetime experience but you will also have an opportunity to travel throughout Indonesia. Finally my semester abroad in Indonesia was life changing for me in many ways so go ahead and give it a go!

To find out more information about this program visit: Indonesian Language Teacher Immersion Program