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My to-do list before coming to Amsterdam

Introducing: Jihaan, our newest student blogger from Indonesia! Jihaan is studying economics and business and is the Spring 2023 Semester in Amsterdam scholarship winner!


Hello there! My name is Jihaan Alyaa, but everyone calls me Jihaan. My friends describe me as a cheerful, friendly, sociable, and energetic person, even if their stomachs hurt from laughing too hard at my jokes. I currently live in Indonesia and am pursuing my bachelor's degree at the Faculty of Economics and Business at the University of Indonesia.


I was born and raised in Jakarta, Indonesia's capital city. The city is well-known for its historical blend of Javanese, Malay, Chinese, Arabic, Indian, and European cultures, which has affected its architecture, language, and cuisines. Despite the city's citizens' dynamic and contemporary lifestyle, Jakarta retains its historical and cultural characteristics. Fatahillah Museum is an important historical legacy in West Jakarta, and its neighboring Kota Tua or Old Jakarta neighborhood is where you may explore the area on a classic bike. Not only that, from the perspective of migrants, Jakarta has its own attractions, one of which is its culinary tours, which are no less wonderful than those of other places. When visiting Jakarta, one of the culinary must-tries is its renowned and timeless dishes, such as Kerak Telor, Soto Betawi, Nasi Uduk, Asinan Betawi, Kue Pancong, and many others.



Why did I choose Amsterdam and the VU?

Studying in Amsterdam has always been a dream of mine. My interest in studying abroad was piqued by the many stories I read and heard from my seniors about their time spent abroad and how they adjusted to the different pace and immersed themselves in the local culture. One of the things that has always fascinated me about Amsterdam is how, despite the city's status as a major financial center, its citizens never fail to pause and take in the sights. I can't wait to get to know the city of Amsterdam and all its hidden treasures. Some of my seniors who participated in the semester program in Amsterdam at Vrije Universiteit encouraged me to apply since they stated that VU Amsterdam is a wonderful location to live and also study. The campus is in the heart of Amsterdam, which means it is in a bustling metropolitan location with a diverse and exciting vibe. Everything I could possibly need as a student is right here on campus, from state-of-the-art study spaces to cafés to fitness centers and various other facilities provided by the campus. To top it all off, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam is widely regarded as one of the world's finest institutions of higher education in economics and business, so it should be a great fit for my ambition to keep learning and developing.



My to-do list (before coming to Amsterdam)


Before I arrived in Amsterdam, my to-do list included the items

  1. Spending time with my family and closest friends, such as walking through certain locations, saying goodbye before departing, and creating memories before parting ways.

  2. Packing items to bring there, such as Dutch-season-appropriate clothing and Indonesian spices that are not available in the Netherlands for preparing traditional Indonesian cuisine if my friends and I miss it.

  3. Learning the Dutch language will make it easier for me to converse with the locals.

  4. Review and prepare the courses I have chosen for the Vrije Universiteit Semester in Amsterdam program.


And with that, we come to the end of this blog for the time being. I hope that through this blog that I have begun, I will be able to assist others by sharing important information and inspiring others to study abroad with self-assurance and determination.


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