Sri “Tina” Agustina is a lecturer at Syiah Kuala University at Banda Aceh, Indonesia, teaching courses in Chemistry, Geochemistry, Marine Chemistry, and Oceanography. Oberlin Shansi has been thrilled to welcome her as a Spring 2019 Visiting Scholar. Since arriving in late January, Tina has been taking full advantage of a range of opportunities at Oberlin. She’s audited classes, taken ExCos, joined a musical group, and explored Northern Ohio.
In the classes she’s taking in the Chemistry department here in Oberlin, Tina’s been observing classroom management and course organization. She’s also paid close attention to communication styles between Oberlin students and professors. Tina wants to integrate what she’s learned at Oberlin into her lectures at Syiah Kuala University in many aspects: creating office hours, assigning weekly optional problem sets, and establishing an “ask me anything” attitude with her students.
Chemistry is only one among many of her interests: in Oberlin, she also studies Chinese, English as a Second Language, and Gamelan performance. Through taking the Korean ExCo, she has also learned the benefits of the Oberlin Experimental College, and how students teaching other students can further education. While she’s studied in Taiwan before, her Visiting Scholar position with Oberlin Shansi is her first experience in North America. In Oberlin, she has created a balance between academic life and recreational activities and splits her time between schoolwork and exploring outside of Oberlin’s academic campus. Dinner parties, visits to farmers markets, and weekly spiritual meetings with various members of the Oberlin community fill her schedule.
Using the Oberlin Shansi travel grant for visiting scholars, Tina has also been able to explore the US outside of Oberlin. From her visits to Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Boston for Spring Break, Atlanta for an oceanography conference, and her day-to-day experiences in Oberlin, Tina has admired the friendliness and openness of many American people. She was struck by the welcoming spirit and support she’s received in her time here so far.