Trinity College and a Family’s Dream

My Trinity story started with a dream of two special people in a small city in Indonesia, my mum and dad. They started lives in two humble families struggling to make ends meet. Dad eventually lifted up the family’s living standard through his hard work and dedication to his career. Meanwhile, mum and dad had a far-fetched dream for their sons to be educated overseas.

With God’s blessings, they were then able to send me, their eldest son to Trinity, as a path to open up opportunities.

For a shy boy with limited communication skills, coming to Australia was a big challenge. Trinity’s program was instrumental to significantly improve my confidence, communication and social skills.

The science subjects that I took were all taught well by fine teachers. I struggled with History of Ideas, English for Academic Purposes (EAP) and particularly Drama so much at the beginning. Surprisingly, these subjects eventually brought out the most of the skills needed to navigate through university and professional life. I can testify that my family’s investment in an education at Trinity was worth every cent.

It was daunting for an 18 year-old to choose a course or a career path that he may end up pursuing for the rest of his professional career. Even if I wasn’t 100%, I ended up choosing Electrical and Electronic Engineering. It was a pretty challenging course, but I’m grateful that Trinity equipped me well for it. Coupled with hard-work and focus I was able to do well.  I was also involved in a couple of student clubs and worked part-time which helped me to grow as a person and along the way, I made some great friends at Trinity and at Melbourne University.

Despite not having an Australian Permanent Residency (PR) visa, I was blessed that Rio Tinto offered me a graduate engineering position in my last semester. In fact, they helped me to obtain my Australian PR at the time. This was in spite of some people telling me that I was wasting my time applying for full-time jobs as an international student.  I believe if your motivation is strong enough and you are willing to put in the hard work and focus, you’ll be able to achieve your goals.

In short, after Rio Tinto and my subsequent career with a multi-national company, MTU Detroit Diesel, I gained experiences in technical sales, electrical design, project management, suppliers and contract management. My career path may sound a bit unusual, but I also did short stints in education marketing, renewable energy and running my own business where I honed my business development skills.

I feel that throughout my career, there has always been signs of an entrepreneurial spirit in me.

Presently, I am running a couple of businesses including an innovative business that I founded in early 2016 called ‘Free Engineer’. In brief, Free Engineer is a group of engineers providing advice to commercial/industrial clients to reduce energy costs and improve sustainability.  The twist is that this advice is typically free of charge! We expect this business to shift the way the energy reduction and solar market run in Australia. We are thankful that within a short time a few good long-term clients have come on-board with us and business income started growing.

While the programs at Trinity and Melbourne University have been excellent, I would encourage prospective and current students to also aspire to life-long learning beyond the lecture theatres. Explore your dreams, build your communication and leadership skills, set your mind for success, learn to connect with people and overcome life challenges. These skills will take you a long way in whatever you do. Everybody’s story is different. However, I hope my humble story can help inspire you to remember why you have come to Trinity College… and set off towards your own journey in the future.

September Accelerated 2002 

20 Jul 2016
Category: Foundation Studies