DR. ROBBY YUSSAC TALLAR
Maranatha Christian University, Indonesia
My Faculty Exchange Program under ACUCA was great. I spent two weeks at Handong Global University (HGU), South Korea. As a Christian institution of higher learning, HGU will be an example of a Christian university that serves its neighbors and the world with love, wisdom, and creativity. Their motto “Why not change the world?” is so amazing. I was enjoying my activities at HGU very much. There were so many things that I learned, and it was so interesting. During the first week, I almost spent my time in introductory meetings with some colleagues at HGU both from the university and faculty. We shared how the Christian education system was implemented in our university. I also joined their mentoring activities with the students and blended with them.
It was such a nice and friendly activity since the students were in the first semester. Their purpose is to have strong relationships among themselves. It was named Team System led by a mentoring professor that consists of about 35 students of mixed majors and years which form a community around the mentoring professor. Students live and study together, building trust relationships through team service activities and meetings. Moreover, I also met Indonesian students at HGU. They shared some stories about how they can get there and their experiences during their studies. I was also joining in their service in Carmichael Chapel. We gathered together to praise and worship God and hear a sermon from the Pastor.
I also visited an exhibit called “Return to New”. These are various innovations designed by the students as their graduation exhibit. I was walking around and found some very interesting projects and research designs.
After that, I met with the Dean of the School of Spatial Environment System Engineering to discuss some opportunities in the future. He invited me to see the laboratory inside the building. We believe that we will have joint collaboration for students and colleagues in the future.
In the second week, I met the President of HGU. It was such a nice meeting to share stories about the university, the future, and the implementation of Christian values. Both universities are willing to have a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) as one of the outcomes of joining this program.
Then I also attended to faculty worship service in the morning and again discussion with the global mission institute meeting. We shared and discussed recent students’ problems and also the Itaewon tragedy. Thank God there was no victim from HGU. I also have lunch together before I went back to Indonesia.
There are so many insights and learnings from the ACUCA FMS program, such as how this university operates the Christian value into their life or activities, for example, students should take an oath not to cheat during their exams for building integrity character since at the beginning as fresh students. Moreover, the mentoring system for students is already built-up so that the relationship among the community is very close and the lecturers are considered as their family.
Besides their cultures, there are many values from my visit abroad, such as intercultural communication, foreign languages, adaptability, and problem-solving. As a professor, visiting a university abroad helps expands my knowledge and international relations. In line with Handong Global University (HGU), South Korea, with their hashtag “Why not change the world”, I developed a global outlook and widened my perspectives.
Thank you very much ACUCA for making these things happen in my life. I am very honored to be selected to join ACUCA FMS Program. It is more important than ever to have the opportunity to explore other ways of life.
My sincere appreciation to Handong Global University for welcoming me and providing me a warm accommodation. It was such a great experience. I learned a lot and wish the partnership between HGU and Maranatha Christian University, Indonesia will be formalized soon.