The European Alliance on Agricultural knowledge for Development

Keep Calm and Travel


I never stop looking for new opportunities for my personal capacity building and personal growth. I believe that opportunities will improve to hone the mindset. A student as myself I need to be a critical person. From the new opportunities we as students get we can test the thinking to be sharper. One of the opportunities that I got is to study in Europe. To study abroad is one of my biggest dreams. If there is a chance for me to study abroad I take it. My name is Hafizah and I am one of the students in Master Programme of Forest Faculty from Universitas Gadjah Mada Yogyakarta (UGM), Indonesia. I have been selected as an awardee of Master of Science Food Security and Climate Change (FSCC) program, mobility one semester in Europe. I was pleased and thankful, when I got the acceptance letter. For this exchange program, I choose University of Göttingen – Georg-August-Universität Göttingen (Germany) to get to know more knowledge and experience in the field of the tropical forestry.

I take various seminars which are directly related to my research activities. I feel really excited to study at one of the Agrinatura’s European universities. There are quite large differences among Asian and European Universities Programmes which I would say so far, these differences are related to teaching and study methods. Furthermore, I would like to mention that language is not a less important factor in my studies. The language skills are must and that is why I try to improve them as much as possible. To introduce the university to all new students, University of Gottingen held the introduction day for welcoming new incoming students. Me and other students planted a semester tree as a symbol for starting winter semester. I really fell cheer up during the introduction day and possibility to know each other even if sometimes I felt a little bit exhausted. Day by day, I am getting used to it here and I try to enjoy all kind of activities. Being one month here, makes me feel so blessed.

People are friendly, and because of Gottingen is a city of science, there are many people from different countries all over the world. I decided to take German language classes here which is one of my approaches to get closer to local culture. I feel nothing to lose joining the German language courses it can only enrich me. I have got the feeling that I have not left Asia as there are so many Asian people here I am quite nicely surprised by this evidence. The courses are full of international students. Thankfully, we as Indonesian students have our own association to help everyone with all the information we receive and to find out if there is any information missing. I would like to encourage all international students to never stop to trying and don’t be afraid to try something different as long as it could be only an improvement and new experiences. From the beginning of this stay, I feel very excited and I am happy to be one of the exchange students coming to Gettingen this semester.

Text and picture by Hafizah Arinah

Edited by Anna Krotuilová