Student Blog

Student guest post: Stepping outside the lecture theatre

After seeing the sights in Europe and Asia, Master of Engineering (Biomedical) student Naomi Sutanto was uneasy about returning home and falling back into the same routine. However, determined to make the most of her final year, Naomi soon found opportunities around the campus to keep her busy:

I am one who believes that education is never wasted.  Even if what we end up doing has nothing to do with our university course, provided we can apply the skills we learn, education is not a waste.

Studying in the Master of Engineering has taught me how to step up into leadership roles, how to work in a team with people of varying backgrounds and skills, and brought to light my strengths and weaknesses.

As unexpected as it is, my most memorable experiences and lessons so far at the University of Melbourne were not always grounded in academia. Here are just a few suggestions on how to make the most of uni life based on my personal experiences:

1. Serve others. Give back to the community. Find unique opportunities.

Literally serving what uni students love: food!

Literally serving what uni students love: food!

Being a support worker, albeit briefly, really opened my eyes to how challenging it is for students with disabilities to study. Yet it was also inspiring to see them determined to not let that affect their dreams. It inspired me to pick a final year project to do with wheelchair cushions.

Running engineering workshops in high schools was something that I count as one of my most valuable university experiences. Being able to relate to the students and interact with them to inspire them to try something new was… I cannot even describe the feeling. It was highly tiring yet also deeply rewarding. More on this in my next post!

2. Have a spirit of adventure. Try something new. Explore.

Hands down my [secret] favourite view from campus

Hands down my [secret] favourite view from campus

Among other things, I am currently searching for the best views on campus. I am also highly involved in our biomedical engineering club and volunteer Skype tutoring (shout out to my lovely student Liesel). There are at least three free museums and exhibition spaces on campus.

Breadth subjects are a great opportunity to add variety into studies. I took and loved ancient history subjects in my undergraduate years and studied management subjects during my graduate exchange. As for psychology – their essays are not my forte, but at least I tried it!

3. Be excited about challenges. The journey will not be easy. Be brave and take on the challenge!

Balancing all of my commitments in this final year is not easy at all. Even during my undergraduate years, when I was not as involved in the campus community, it was not easy. But despite this, I still took subjects that interested me, rather than the ones that were easy. Challenges keep me from getting bored.

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