"A letter from International Students to Commerce International"
The pandemic has hindered the plans of many students this year to continue their studies overseas. In this blog series ‘A letter to Commerce International’ we reached out to a range of students impacted by travel restrictions to gain insight into their experiences studying remotely.
These are their responses.
Hello! I’m Vivian and I’m an international student from Jakarta, Indonesia. I am studying the Bachelor of Commerce here at UNSW. Nevertheless, due to the pandemic, I am still stuck here in Jakarta. A number of years ago, I was able to visit the beautiful Sydney which became one of the factors that led to the decision of me studying at UNSW.
Although my online learning experience has had its ups and downs, I should say there are substantially more difficulties. Firstly, the inability to attend classes (mostly tutorials) physically has been the most challenging aspect because online classes don’t have the same classroom atmosphere and it is easy to fall out of focus while the tutor is teaching as there are many distractions.
Following that would be my motivation levels, I am 100% sure that I would be more inspired to study if I was surrounded by a supporting environment such as, in a classroom, study groups, and seeing other students focused on their own assignments. However, the fact that my bedroom has become my primary study space is hardly motivating.
Luckily though, I haven’t had any major problems in my social life even though it’d be nice to be able to join the liveliness of society events or O-week :).
The COVID response has been improving in my country especially with the vaccines rolling out. I haven’t heard anything definite news about Sydney opening its borders soon for international students, so I’m quite devastated with the fact that I wouldn’t get the full uni experience anytime soon.
Some fun facts about Indonesia:
- It has more than 17000 islands.
- Even though it has only one main language (Bahasa Indonesia), Indonesia has more that 650 dialects.
In addition, many Indonesian young adults are invested into K-pop and Western music culture too.
During COVID, I have tried out many activities and one that was quite permanent is reading novels. When the lockdown started, I had a lot of free time which is why I could indulge myself in reading. Additionally, I took French courses to fill my spare time but stopped when university started.
When the borders reopen, the first thing I would do is probably take a plane to Australia and check out the UNSW campus in Sydney. Then, I would probably explore the city of Sydney during my free time or holidays.