Dr Amalia Dwi Susanti’s dream of making a difference to public health in Indonesia led her to Flinders University in 2018 on a BKKBN Scholarship to study a Masters in Public Health.
Dr Susanti undertook her medical training at the University of Brawijaya in Malang, East Java, graduating in 2009. She worked as a general practitioner for several years before taking up a position as a Medical Doctor and Family Planning Analyst for the National Population and Family Planning Board of Indonesia (BKKBN) in Central Kalimantan.
After graduating from Flinders in December 2019 she returned to Indonesia to BKKBN where she and her team work to ensure that family planning services and education can be accessed by the community, particularly those who are most disadvantaged.
‘In my studies at Flinders, one of the most fundamental skills that I learnt was critical thinking. The academic staff encouraged us to analyse scenarios in different perspectives and from a range of viewpoints. I learnt to think more broadly and apply outcomes from previous cases with practical knowledge and considered theory: this is already a significant attribute for me professionally, and an asset for my employers.
‘Studying in Adelaide was a great experience for me and broadened my horizons: I was able to immerse myself in a new culture, socialise with friends from other countries and cultures, and to learn from people with a range of different perspectives and experiences.’
A valuable lesson from her time at Flinders was that education gives you the power to dream and to succeed.
‘Of course, I want to have a good job, but more than that I want to make a difference in public health in my country, particularly in the areas of family planning, reproductive health, and mother and child health.’
‘I would like to become a university lecturer. And, if I have the chance, I one day hope to return and undertake my PhD in public health.’