Born in Malang, East Java on 18 November 1994, Cyntia left for Minnesota in the US to pursue her studies in the ﬁeld of chemical engineering. She is the middle child of three siblings. Her father runs his own business servicing electronics and her mother is a housewife. From day to day, Cynthia was never absent from the neighborhood library; to her, reading is like a daily meal that can enrich one’s outlook on the world.
Cyntia was not unmindful in choosing a university. The chemical engineering faculty at the University of Minnesota ranks third best in the US, which made Cyntia ever more enthusiastic to begin classes there. The different language, system of education and environment were obstacles at ﬁrst when she arrived in the US. To overcome these challenges, she pushed herself to be active and found courage to express her opinion in class.
Cyntia is very impressed with the campus system in the US, and feels it would be advantageous if applied in Indonesia. Firstly, the administration of ofﬁce hours; ofﬁce hours is (1-2 hours per week) allocated by professors and teaching assistants for students to directly address concerns on course material or even on non-academic matters. This really helps students who want to perform better in class or simply to know their professor better. Secondly, the strict rule on plagiarism -- in her opinion, the serious management of plagiarism can help one to be more honest and creative. Thirdly, the opportunity to apply coursework learned in class. This will help students to understand the subject in its entirety and experience the beneﬁts of what they learned.
The difference in lifestyle and culture that she experienced in the US could certainly be problematic and hamper her scholastic achievements. However, Cyntia felt conﬁdent in adapting to a new environment due to the knowledge that she gained at Sampoerna Academy. The boarding school system helped Cyntia to learn, become independent and responsible. She learned to strengthen her ability in time management that helped her adapt to the rigors of university life. Apart from attending chemical engineering classes, Cyntia also works part time as a tutor for a number of subjects, and participates in organizations (Society of Asian Scientist and Engineers and PERMIAS).
While undergoing her studies at University of Minnesota, Cyntia carried out her internship at PT Sandoz Indonesia where she handled the process of change control. Although slightly different from the ﬁeld of study, this internship added insight and experience in overseeing product quality control in the technical industry.