So many people asked me, “Gimana rasanya sekolah di Crawford?”
Its not the question that tricky, but how to answer the question is. As I believe, people already has assumption and expectation of my answer. Which I don’t know if my experience here fulfil their expectation. And usually I answered it with cliche answer:
But also grateful, surrounded with passionate people, easy access academic resources, and non-stop discussions.
True, it’s hard living here. It never easy in the first place. You have to live far away from home (not far in my case actually). As someone who never live alone (always receive big support from family), the struggle is real. What it means to be independent and living on your own feet. I learnt how to take care of myself, cook for myself, clean up the room and everything. How you manage time between study and everything. Not to mention sometimes you missed your home, your friends, your families and every familiar things back home. Its getting harder especially after you faced difficulties (exams, a lot of deadlines, bad scores, etc).
But… you found your new home here. Your new familiar things. Friends, libraries, buses, foods, etc. It reminds me with a friend of mine who always told me that “what doesn’t kill you will make you stronger“. And Canberra is a beautiful place to live in. Rather than complaining, I tried to enjoy the solitude. Yes, it’s quite and less people. By less is, only 388,000 people live here! While in Jakarta, it’s 9,6 million people live there! Crazy. No traffic, almost less pollution (according to WHO, its one of cleanest capital city in the world). Back in my dorm room, I can see the Black Mountain. Only 3k from my dorm, there is a place called Black Mountain Peninsula, which is my favourite run track, that you can enjoy the lake, black swan and beautiful sunset. In front of the National Library, you can practically enjoy the Lake Burley Griffin in the afternoon. It really is a perfect place to live (for those who love tranquil life).Not to mention, the coffee is here is one of the best!
I called it as “Canberra Syndrome“. When you feel its better to live here compare to Sydney or Melbourne haha.
Speaking about Crawford, I have to be honest, I actually I was afraid of my decision to continue my study here. By hear it name, everybody knows its one of the best school for you who want to study Public Policy. But its perfectly fit with what I’m looking for. And also, my friend always told me that “pisau yang tajam adalah pisau yang diasah di bara panas“, he encourages me to go for the hardest situation. To challenge myself. To see how far I’ll go and how good I’ll become in the future. So, yes, Crawford it is.
It never be easy, but I will try my best to conquer it.
So how was in Crawford?
If you take two years programs, in the first year you will have 8 compulsory courses to strengthen your basic knowledge. The classes combine with seminar class & tutoring class. In a seminar class, the lecturer will lead the class. And in tutoring class, you will have a deeper discussion with the tutor (a PhD student). Which I found its more interesting to have sharing knowledge and experience with other students in tutoring class. The assignments mostly are essays and papers. But I also have two podcast assignments this semester (kind of a vlog of yourself gives a presentation in specific topic within 3 – 5 minutes). And during you do your assignments, we can discuss it with the lecturer, tutor and academic advisor. Its not just about you can finish your essay on-time. Its all about how well you present your ideas and how well you know the knowledge that you’ve gained during classes. As Indonesian, it’s difficult to write an essay that straight to the point (we are too descriptive sometimes and its unnecessary). We also have different way of thinking and approach to answer the question. I have to agree that maybe this time is the time where I read more books and journals compare to my previous education back home. Lack of sleep is a common thing here. Maybe you only sleep for 3 hour maximum during deadline weeks. Eventhough you already prepare your essay for a month!
But it’s fun. All those struggles, sweat, tears, laugh, smile and sweet moments, its exactly what I’ve wanted. Surely, I’m gonna miss this city and all moments here so much.
But most of all, pursue higher education is just not about study but experience. I will talk more about it on my next post.
Have a good winter people in down under.