“If you could give one piece of advice to your 18-year-old self, what would it be?”
That was one of the essay questions I got while applying for the Cambridge MBA. As I close one of the most rewarding chapters of my life, I wanted to use a similar question as my reflective question to close this chapter of life.
“If you could give one piece of advice to your one-year-ago self, what would it be?”
Choosing only one piece of advice is difficult, so here are three pieces of advice I would like to give to myself as a Cambridge MBA student from Indonesia.
Number 1 – Cambridge is very diverse, but you always find a part of your home there.
Cambridge is a very diverse place, let alone being part of the MBA programme. With 40+ nationalities and various backgrounds, it is a very international place to study for your MBA. Though it is one of the attractive points for prospective students, it can also be very daunting for others. As an introvert, I sometimes felt exhausted from attending all of the networking events in the beginning. Initially, I sometimes avoided networking events (yeah, social events can drain my energy as an introvert). However, the Cambridge Indonesia Association helped me to adapt faster here in Cambridge. The ability to talk and communicate with your fellow countryman (and woman) helps you to recharge and be ready to socialise again in a diverse community like Cambridge.
Number 2 – Cambridge will open many doors to you (trust me when I say it has a lot of doors!)
Even though this statement seems obvious, once I stepped into this University, the number of opportunities was limitless. From the opportunities in the Colleges and the Business School to the student societies you join. I still recall that one time, when I woke up, there was a chance to meet government officials from Indonesia that were visiting Cambridge! This opportunity will only be there if I am in Cambridge.
Number 3 – Living in Cambridge means there will be a lot of knowledge in the air. So be ready to grasp it!
Cambridge is full of knowledge, but I never expected that I could learn from every corner of it. From talking to the security officer in Sainsbury’s, who writes an Amazon-published book, to the random conversations you have in the college bar, all the knowledge is ready to be grasped wherever you go in Cambridge.
To summarise, the advice I would like to give to my one-year-ago self is to be ready to embrace the this-will-change-you journey that only lasts once in your lifetime on the Cambridge MBA!