THE MALAYSIAN OZ START OFF

My journey through the UniSA ISBS Malaysia Chapter.

 elisa-unisa-student-blogger By Elisa,

It has been a wonderful journey being part of the ISBS Malaysia Chapter committee. There were picnics, a welcome lunch, gala dinner and paintball challenge organised throughout these few months. Every event was like a roller coaster.

How it all began

I still remember how I started involving myself in the business society. It was on a random moody day during the end of summer this year, whereby the sun shone, and the wind gave a gentle breeze. The first event of the year, Welcome Lunch, was held on the same day as the Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the ISBS Malaysia Chapter.

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I was late for the lunch because my tutorial ended late. When I arrived there, I stood alone, watching the gorgeous congregation of South East Asians for the first time since I landed in Adelaide. Their faces had the nearly the same features as mine. It was really touching.

I was stunned and panicked, wondering what to do. Everyone had a paper plate filled with aromatic food on hand. I thought about the only Malaysian that I was close with. I rang her. I told her and roughly described my situation here. She said she would be there in 10 minutes. The social awkward feeling that I had instilled in me since I was young started to mix with the amazement that I had a few seconds ago. I waited for her like a lamppost at the corner.

Making new connections

I saw her coming towards me. A smile drew across my face. We walked together and started chit chatting with the friends that she had known. (Yes, I didn’t have any friends there!) We took whatever food was left in the trays and settled down at a table surrounded by Malaysians. Guess what? We continued our chit chats with the others with jokes that all of us could get. The thick Malaysian accent spiced up with the Australian accent was heard. Everything seemed like going with the groove.

People came and went. Some stayed a bit longer than the others. Some went for tutorials; some went for workshops.

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I had a tutorial in the evening before the AGM started. I went to my tutorial. It was, indeed, the first time that I felt so energised to be in a tutorial. The U-curve on my face continued to stay throughout the evening.

My new role

The tutorial ended late. I quickened my pace to the room where the AGM would be held at, not wanting to miss out anything. As soon as I arrived there, I saw those familiar faces again.  The AGM was started by the previous Chairperson of ISBS Malaysia Chapter. She did well in her sharing. There wasn’t stage fright at all. I thought it must be what being in the committee had made her.

The voting started. I voted myself to be an event manager, but I ended up being a marketing manager. I couldn’t imagine what I had done to myself, all I knew was God had a plan for me. My dearest friend ended up being the other marketing manager. We were ‘partners in crime’.It was a big stepping stone for me.

The benefits

The journey after that was lively, thrilling and stressful. There were many jokes made during the committee meeting. The laughter was kept in my heart. The relationships between them had grown stronger one even after another. The hardship that we faced as we stood by each other, we were trying hard to help each other out. We walked together during the night after the meeting. It was a blessing.

There were also stressful occasions when we tried our very best to make the events a success. Besides learning to be understanding, I also got the chance to be more outspoken and interactive, especially when we had a collaboration with the other ISBS chapters or even the other Malaysian organisations here.

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Here I am, nurturing myself in the ISBS Malaysia Chapter and having an extraordinary start to my first year of university in Kangaroo Land.

*** ISBS – International Student Business Society that assists international students who are interested in business to enrich university experience, building up networking and interaction.
ISBS: Malaysia Chapter

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