Student - April 16, 2020

YOU (still) on campus – ‘I can’t study at home so I go to the Forum every day’

Luuk Zegers

Master’s student of Food Technology Stefanus Mega Prabawa (26) from Indonesia decided to stay in Wageningen during the coronavirus crisis. He mainly fills his days with studying in the Forum. ‘Every day, from eight in the morning until seven in the evening.’

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‘It’s a long flight back to Indonesia,’ Prabawa says. ‘The city where I come from is closed off, so even if I were to go back, I still wouldn’t be able to visit my family. So I decided to stay here and study.’ Even though all education has moved to online only, Prabawa still studies on campus. ‘I can’t work at home. I’m not productive there. So I study in the Forum every day, including weekends. I always go to the same spot, right in front of the library. Only one in three PCs is still working, to ensure that students stay more than 1.5 metres apart. So there are not a lot of people there.’

Even if I were to go back, I wouldn’t be able to visit my family

Prabawa takes his lunch break from midday to one o’clock. ‘Sometimes in front of the computer, but on sunny days I go and sit by the lake to chill a bit. I Skype with friends during the break — we may not be together but we can still have lunch together.’ After a long day studying, Prabawa likes to eat dinner with friends. ‘Most of the time I eat alone now, but sometimes we have dinner together. But only with two or three people and we keep our distance. These dinners are important to me, otherwise I would go crazy.’
Prabawa is sad that the education switched to online because of the coronavirus. ‘We have practicals that we need to do in the lab, but that’s not possible now. So we study via YouTube. I think these practicals are important for Master’s students. I came a long way to experience these things live. If everything switches to online only, I might just as well have stayed in Indonesia.’