College Q&A Series: Why did I choose my current school?

INTRO: I have talked a bit about this before.

For those who don’t know, I am currently a college student majoring in Japanese Studies. I am pursuing a bachelor degree in Universitas Indonesia. On my other blog, I have talked about how I chose my major and the rough detail of why I chose my current university. The blog post was (as my other posts on that blog) written in Indonesian. This entry, on the other hand, is written in English and more focused on my college choices instead of my major.

While Universitas Indonesia was my first choice, I did apply to several different colleges (some even with different majors) after I finished my final high school exam. I applied for Universitas Airlangga and Universitas Gadjah Mada. But to be honest, I was kind of desperate to enter Universitas Indonesia. Not that those two other colleges aren’t good, but mostly because I wanted to experience being a student in Universitas Indonesia.

The first reason being the environment–the landscape. Universitas Indonesia has amazing green environment. It has lakes, forest, parks. The thought of being a student there was just amazing for me. Imagine spending the afternoon after class beside the lake, or taking a walk on Sunday morning through the forest and parks.

The second reason being it’s in the different province from my hometown. I spent my childhood and teenager years in Central Java, always being in the majorities because I am Muslim and speaks Javanese. Universitas Indonesia is in West Java, in the outskirts of the capital city of Jakarta (Indonesia’s capital city). I wanted to know how it felt to be one of the minorities, but in a more friendly environment.

One of my professor actually said that if I wanted a more diverse environment, Universitas Gadjah Mada would be a more logical option. Despite this, though, I found that what she meant by “diversity” was not exactly what I was looking for. I didn’t want people who came from different ancestors and spoke different language, but people who were truly “diverse” in terms of personalities and the way they perceived the world. They are who they are because they create their own personas and quirks. Most of my friends are all “weird”, in a good way. They’re exceptional and unique. I want an environment brimming with different colours and energies.

How did I know that Universitas Indonesia would be the right choice for me? How would I know if my friends were as quirky as I hoped them to be?

The answer was I didn’t know. It’s just a gut feeling. My high school friends chose to go east, abroad, or stay in the same province. I went west. I just knew that I’d find my people there. And I did. My college friends are my people. They are nothing like me, but they are, somehow, my people.

The third reason I chose Universitas Indonesia was I thought of it as a bridge to a new world I aspired to be. I have three dream schools and Universitas Indonesia is one of them. I thought that I’d get used to a different world, bit by bit, by getting to know Depok and other cities around it.

If you sum up everything I’ve written on this entry, I guess you could say that the reasons I chose my current school are more intuitive than logical. Maybe I just can simply say that I like my college and I want to be a part of it. And a part of me, it has become too. I don’t regret my choice. I feel I belong there.

16.25. Listening to Halsey’s 929.

Sragen. 14.07.2020.

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