Are you scared of starting something new? Are you planning to study far away from home but you have a lot of doubts in mind? What if you get homesick? What if you can’t adapt? What if things don’t work out? So many what if’s and to know the answers is to get through it and experience the whole journey. The start of something new is always scary. You meet new people, you are in a new place and a new environment. Everything is new to you, but it can be exciting too.
We have a graduate all the way from Indonesia, Achmad Reiza Arfani, who experienced a similar situation. Let’s read on to know his experience studying and working at IUKL before he went back to Indonesia for good.
Finding the courage to pursue my dreams
I wanted to study abroad. I think most of us have that dream to study overseas. I was actually very scared to go abroad to study but I wanted to challenge myself. So I thought, if I wanted to go, I should go far, not just in Indonesia but actually in a different country. At that point of time, it was either Europe or Malaysia.
To be honest, I am not from a rich family. There were a few options available and after considering all the factors, I chose Malaysia. And after careful consideration, IUKL was the best option. One of the main reasons is the affordable fees and tuition fee waiver. And lucky enough for me, I was a tuition fee waiver recipient for most of my semesters.
I can say that my journey was a roller coaster ride as I remembered that I had the chicken pox the first few days after arriving in Malaysia. It was horrible. I was alone, in a different country and I was sick. Can you imagine?
I took my degree in English for Professional Communication. I had to speak in English most of the time. I was scared because I was afraid that my English is not good enough so I was rather shy and quiet. Everything was just so new to me but I had to adjust anyway. Having said all that, I enjoyed my classes, nevertheless. My lecturers and classmates certainly made things better. As much as I enjoyed studying here, the memories were bittersweet. I felt that I was a burden to my family as my father was the only breadwinner. So, studying far from home and needing a lot of money didn’t feel so good.
But on the other hand, things worked out for me well I can say. I got to do my internship at the Marketing and Communications Division at IUKL. Once I completed my internship, I was offered a job at the department as a Local Marketing Executive which requires me to speak in Malay. That’s quite an experience since I have to learn to speak another language. At the same time, I had to assist the International Marketing Unit as well which requires me to travel a lot to Indonesia, Brunei, Sudan, Qatar, Egypt, Bangladesh and Mauritius. This was a beautiful experience for me and I am so grateful.
Being in Malaysia for almost 8 years, my colleagues have become my second family. Though at times, we have our disagreements, but at the end of the day, I know that they have my back and I can count on them. I will be forever grateful for the relationships made and I will definitely come back to visit someday. Due to some personal reasons, I had to go back to Indonesia. I am currently working as an English teacher at a tuition center, so what I learned has definitely helped me in what I do. I enjoy what I do so far though it’s a lot different than my previous job, but I am excited to learn more.
The importance of understanding professional communication
For me personally, taking this programme was not solely to earn a degree or to get a job when I graduate but I learned so much more. I learned about the language, understanding the skills to communicate, how to deal with people, to convey messages, avoid miscommunication, persuade people and so much more. But most importantly, I learned about myself along the way. I practically grew up here from studying to getting a job. I groomed myself to be more presentable which helps boost my confidence level.
I am grateful for everything, from the knowledge gained to the relationships built. I feel that experience is something that you cannot learn in classes. You learn things as you go through it. You make mistakes, you fall, you pick yourself up again. These are what makes you stronger. And the whole journey is what makes the experience valuable.