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Syifa Tsamara: “It’s Okay to Feel Scared but Don’t Let It Hinder You!”

While studying at SMA Al Azhar BSD, Syifa Tsamara was interested in social studies, which include languages. “I decided to major in English Language Teaching at Sampoerna University due to my passion in both the English Language and in Education,” she said.

As she learned the news that she got accepted, she was anxious yet excited to experience a different university life from the rest of my graduating class. Most of them were going to big, public universities majoring in various fields. “While I was going to a relatively new, private university in the middle of Jakarta, majoring in something that people often question. But my English teachers encouraged me to enter Sampoerna University,” said the bright student who could have gone to Universitas Indonesia (French Literature major) but decided to go to Sampoerna University instead.

As she was studying at Sampoerna University, Syifa also had some professional experience up in her sleeves. She had been tutoring since her sophomore year and made use of her linguistic prowess to serve as an interpreter at numerous campus events. Aside from that, she was teaching as an intern at Sampoerna Academy Jakarta, Sampoerna Academy Boarding School, and Sekolah Kembang during four of her SEP periods respectively. Syifa’s best experience might be the fact that she served as President of BEM Faculty of Education from 2016 to 2018.

Previously working as an education intern at Titik Pintar, a startup company that focused on creating an educational app for elementary students, Syifa is currently working at Pusat Studi Pendidikan dan Kebijakan (PSPK) while working as an English tutor. “I’m working as a full-time junior researcher at PSPK, so I usually help with literature review for all projects. I also help with searching (and sometimes processing) the required data.”

Syifa is very fond of reading and writing, so in her free time she writes as much as she could. “I don’t read much these days just because I’m afraid to lose track of time,” confessed the bookworm. Therefore, when Syifa wants and needs to de-stress, she turns to games.

Syifa thinks that every experience she had at Sampoerna University is applicable to her life after graduation. “From communication and English classes, I had learned to be more confident in speaking up and speaking in front of many people, where all the attention is on me,” said the introverted youth. She also mentioned that Psychology and Social Emotional Learning are useful in the professional setting she is now living in.

Her extracurricular activities at Student Executive Organization of the Faculty of Education also taught her how to solve problems and interact with people with different personalities and characteristics. She is grateful for this because this had helped her a lot in adapting to new work environments.

Next, Syifa plans to pursue a master’s degree in Australia and continues to contribute to the education in Indonesia. She added, “I wish to help build a better place for Indonesian students to learn, acquire knowledge and be able to implement said knowledge in life to help them build a better life for themselves.”

Syifa has a recipe for success. “If something interests you, be curious and find out more about it; I’m talking about skills, clubs, organizations, camp, and such. If you’re scared, that’s okay, but don’t let that fear hinder you from possibly achieving new skills or knowledge, and even friends.”

For introverted people like herself, Syifa advised that you push yourselves to interact with other people. “Your network can really help you in getting a job, so encourage yourself to interact with other people, including your lecturers. It never hurts to be friendly and you never know, it can help you someday,” she wisely stated. (*/)