A Letter to My Future Self on Graduation – Reflections of an International Student
If you are reading this, it means it’s your graduation day. Let me congratulate you, you made it. Do you remember trying on your dad’s graduation gown and cap fantasizing about this day? Well, some fantasies do come true, now as they call your name, stand up and walk head up high and smile wholeheartedly as you receive that piece of paper. It symbolizes the hard work throughout your life. Don’t shy away from celebrating the best day of your life.
Studying computer science was no joke and it was an enjoyable journey. Remember all the pressure you had to endure to finish your projects on time? Remember the anxiety you felt during exam time because you knew you had to maintain your GPA high? Well, congratulations because you made it. Above all the pressure learning was mind opening and it was fun too. Remember when you made your first game in the first semester? You couldn’t believe it.
Today you did not only receive a degree in computer science. Today marks the end of your life as a student at BINUS. But… your participation will always remain as your contribution to this community. The many hours tutoring in the local schools will be remembered by the children and their parents as the new batch of students takes over your responsibility. And the Binary Club will miss you too. You have met lasting friendships with fellow computer science students. These bonds will continue to hold as you support each other in your careers.
After this day, you may leave Indonesia shortly. Take home with you the wonderful and frustrating moments of living as a foreigner here. Remember all those nosy questions…? I am sure you will miss them, and you will miss the fast-paced life in the city of Jakarta, with hundreds of malls that trained you to resist overspending. And treasure your trips to Bali and Yogyakarta that you took with your friends. This country is made of a long history at the crossroad of cultures embodied in the street life of vendors, performers, motorcycle taxis, and the likes of you.
Let me finish with a round of applause. You are strong, you overcame boundaries, you have grown so much, and you left the mark. Breathe in and love the moment. And never forget the journey to it. And never forget the bonds that will continue to shape you.