Studying Abroad in a Plague

Updated: Aug 12, 2021

University of Melbourne
Photo from The University of Melbourne - Indonesia Office

In recent years, many seniors have graduated from our school amid a pandemic and that doesn’t seem to be going away in the immediate future. With graduation coming up many students have started thinking about which countries and universities they want to enroll in. Many of us graduating still do not understand how university activities have changed after the pandemic. In this article I interviewed two alumni from Sampoerna Academy, Benedict and Patrick about what to expect in the process and when studying abroad.

Benedict Constantin Susanto is currently a student at Sunway University in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, studying hospitality management. In his university, he explains that more theoretical classes have been moved online while practical classes are being pushed back. For his field of study, it is very difficult for him to understand some aspects of the subjects as practical experience in classes is vital for his understanding. This paired with continuous online sessions has made studying very challenging for him, but even with the current situation, he is still trying his best. As he understands our situation, he has some words of motivation for us, “We suffer today but suffer for the good in the future.” Things may be hard now, but we should keep fighting to turn our current struggle into the fruitful results of a better future.

Patrick Ken, a student at the University of Melbourne, Australia. “Before the pandemic, classes were fully offline but now we had transitioned into dual delivery.” Dual delivery being a kind of hybrid between online and offline classes which also applies in exams. This dual-delivery system was put in place since not all students have arrived in Australia, and so online classes are available for those still in their home country. Similarly to Benedict, Patrick tells us that the practical classes have been postponed until further notice and many of the lectures are still held online. “Although staying in your home country and doing online classes can save costs, you miss out on the culture in the country you are heading to for your studies.” Though he likes the idea of online lectures, Patrick still believes that physical classes not only help you pay more attention but also convey more information and give better opportunities to ask more questions. Lastly, as words of motivation: “If you have the intensity and hard work to keep studying, you can succeed. Everyone around the world is studying online and so if they can succeed that means you can too.“

We hope the messages conveyed from these two alumni help motivate you to keep working hard amidst the pandemic. We know that paying attention in class and consistently studying, especially in the comfort of your home is hard, as there are many distractions, but we all have our own goals that we must strive for, and to achieve those dreams we will have to keep working hard in our studies.


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