These past four years have been a journey…
…I pursue my study in Microbiology, so as taking chance to develop research and innovation into products and solutions for the society. Throughout undergraduate learning process, I studied concepts, technology and conducted social services related with microbial application with fellow students. We did numerous exciting activities! Let’s peek some remarkable memories created.
Back to 2012, it was the first time I took classes with students from diverse region across the country. I hanged out around Bandung with “best-friend-material” buddies, joined extracurricular activities, sneak to classes, and finally past all exams of the first year program. Unexpectedly, I and my friend Marcella got awards for best achievements among students in SITH faculty.
Then I had to choose my study program between Biology and Microbiology. No doubt I chose Microbiology, because I had no guts in doing animal experiments. Surely I would not sleep well after first surgery trial. Besides, I’m curious about learning microbiology, the field seems sophisticated and I’m eager to know more about it.
Turns out I opened a Pandora box!
Microbiology is all about microorganisms, a very large group of very small cells with importance.
Microbiology embraces ecology, how they associate and cooperate with each other, and what they do in the world at large, in soils and waters and in animals and plants.
(cited from Brock et al., 2016)
What captivated me is that microbiology is at the forefront of many important breakthroughs in human and veterinary medicine, agriculture, and industry. From infectious diseases to soil fertility to the fuel we need daily, microorganisms affect the everyday lives of humans in both beneficial and detrimental ways.
But it involved SO MUCH EXPERIMENTS! Our lab-works were time consuming and exciting at the same time. I learned new techniques, how to make a report, how to read scientific papers, how to handle microbes… Overall it was basic knowledge for microbiologist.
On my third year, I took specialized courses focused on microbial ecology, phycology, microalgae cultivation, and became assistant for several lab projects. At this stage I have to deal seriously in more advanced lectures too. The first half-year courses were so intense for me, but fortunately I managed to pass. The next half-year were milder because less lectures and more experiments, it needs strategic time management but less stressful 🙂
I also thought out loud about internship and final thesis project. Well, internship was no burden, I got my internship in a very friendly start-up company, so it’s a really fun experience like a holiday :). About final thesis, I want to do it in Japan sooooo badly. It was my desire since long time ago. Many works, discussions, considerations, and trials and strategic plans have been done to prepare this. I already got approval from a really nice Professor in Japan to do experiments for my thesis, only funding is needed. So around January 2015 I applied for a scholarship to conduct a research in Kyushu University, Japan. After that I waited anxiously with high expectation, while finishing my third year in Microbiology and there were other projects too.
( =thesis year=fourth year=almost-being-kicked-out year)
When Kyushu scholarship finally announced, I succeeded the application! YAY YAY. Best days are yet to come to me! ^^v
So I was outside Indonesia in October 2015 to March 2016 in Fukuoka Japan. All in all, no experience can replace this great memories. The rest of the story can be found in past posts of this blog. I wrote many posts about it!
After March 2016, I’m back to my home university. In brief my days were like this:
I can conclude that my undergraduate study contributes most to my development as a person and as a thinker. Of course, many unique experiences were created besides academic life. Some silly acts happened; like our flooded base camp when staying overnight, accidents in labs, play in mud puddles and lakes during field trips, being chased by monkeys who rushed to our houses (in another field trip! XD) and found a new species of mushroom potential to cure cancer.
I also involved in several social activities such as; training farmers and citizens to cultivate mushroom, delivering workshops on fermentation food and beverages, teaching housewives to utilize organic waste for making fermented fertilizer. Through sharing science we made positive impacts, so I’ve grown passionate to apply microbial biotechnology further.
Apart from the ugly sides (surely there are bad experience)… I am so damn satisfied with the whole process that now I can embrace better days that are yet to come!^^