Study in Australia
Becoming an International Student is certainly not easy. Language is a major obstacle considering English is not our first language. This is also what I was worried about before the lecture started. How to talk to the lecturer later, what if I do not understand the explanation of the lecturer, and other things that may also be experienced by friends who first feel abroad. At the beginning it was a little difficult for me to understand the explanation from the lecturer, as a result after college I tried to listen back to the recording of the lecture. But, luckily the lecturers here are very friendly and understand what it’s like to be an International student. There are many study groups aimed at mentoring new students who are still in the period of adaptation. In addition, the non-stressful atmosphere of lectures provided my own comfort. The outstanding appreciation of the lecturer towards his students managed to impress me. Good, Excellent, Great, Awesome is a word that is often heard during lectures. Great For me, this appreciation is one form of motivation to increase students’ confidence.
Living in Australia as a Muslim
Being a Muslim in a country with a majority of the population is not Muslim does take a bit of a struggle. If in Indonesia can find halal places to eat easily, then here needs extra effort to ensure its halalness, one of which is by asking friends who have settled here first or directly ask the seller. Shopping for food in the store is not as easy as when in Indonesia, it is necessary to be thorough to see the ingredients of the product. I once accidentally bought food that turned out to contain pork ingredients because of my ignorance of the term used. With regard to prayer, since there are not many mosques to be found here, then me and friends often make use of empty places either under the stairs, near toilets, or space near the park that we can use to roll out prayer mats. People here value diversity so much that praying in such a public place is not something that is considered strange.
What about on campus? I am so grateful to be part of a campus that is very tolerant of differences. In Monash there is a religious centre,where two rooms are reserved specifically for Muslim students (sisters prayer room and brothers prayer room)with facilities that I think are very good for the size of the campus with the majority of non-Muslim students. In addition, as a guide to muslim students is also provided a handbook “Salaam Monash” which contains halal food information, Muslim doctors, Islamic schools and other information.
Six months already I’ve been living my life as an undergraduate student at Monash University Australia. Many likes and certainly there is also grief that I experienced. I hope to be able to go to college well, finish on time and when returning to Indonesia later can provide benefits for the crowd. Aamiin.
Melbourne, September 25, 2015