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Writer: Kalyana Sidra | Illustrator: Ariyani Nuraini | Editor: Athaya Thahirah Hardono | Photographer: Kalyana Sidra

Back again with APUINA Stories and this time, we are honored to feature Tatyana Almira, a recent MBA graduate from APU. Of course, her accomplishments reach far beyond that, with admirable titles consisting of being a 2014 Miss Indonesia finalist (at only 18 years old!), becoming a member of Beta Gamma Sigma during her time in APU, and more.

Perhaps the most intriguing part of her resume is despite having a stable job that she loved at Antikode after attaining a double degree from Universitas Indonesia (UI) and the University of Queensland, Tatyana managed to pack up her life and blaze a new trail in Japan. The reason behind? Intuition.

Let’s hear more!

Which experiences/achievements would you say helped shape the person you are now?

I would say my time in Miss Indonesia. I was 18 then and being surrounded by so many admirable women at that age definitely opened up my eyes. I was quite shy back then and now, my friends can’t get me to shut up. My horizons, my understanding of what I can achieve as a woman, and my confidence in speaking up about the things I care about, all definitely leveled up afterwards.

Source: Tribun News

You named ‘intuition’ as the factor behind your abrupt move to get a Master’s degree in Japan, could you elaborate more on that?

Yes. See, I had a great job before coming to APU – I loved it. But something told me I was meant for more. So I packed up and got a Master’s degree in Japan. I had never thought of doing that before!

So, it might sound cliché, but I followed that little voice in me. All of my friends thought I was nuts for quitting a steady job, but trusting myself and my intuitions led me to where I am today. That’s when I learned something, that we shouldn’t take the little things for granted.

Nowadays, It’s the little things in life that keep me going. Things like having a particularly good day at work, or being able to fit some time with friends in my busy schedule, those moments mean so much to me. Little by little, they add up to my motivation.

Going from university, to work, back to uni, then back to work, what would you say is the most important takeaway from the ‘uni experience’ that you can actually benefit from in the workplace?

Well, having undergone both situations of being an undergraduate and graduate student, the two experiences were definitely different for me. After I got my bachelor’s degree and jumped straight to a professional work setting, I was completely lost.

At that time, fresh out of college, I had no experience regarding work. A bit of a funny story, I was actually severely underpaid for a particular job but I didn’t even realize it as I proudly showed it off to my mom, who promptly berated me for being ignorant of my worth. Even so, I spent my years in university slowly getting my feet on the ground, which is important in its own right.

Graduate school was a whole ‘nother story. Thankfully, I was a little more experienced, and the whole niche of grad school was having a specific set of knowledge that you wanted to master. So, as I was getting my Master’s degree, I was actually learning more about myself – about what kind of career I wanted to be in. That’s the most important takeaway I got from graduate school.

Also, for us students, what should we cherish lovingly during our university life?

Enjoy your time. That’s it. I had only realized the joy of having lots and lots of free time after going into the workplace.

Also, take time to get to know who you are, slowly. Being in APU, you get to experience living on your own and that can be wonderful if you make the most of it!

How has your experience been as a young woman in the workplace/professional setting?

Honestly, there are times where I feel judged for being a woman. Moments where my voice mattered less and my work goes unappreciated. It can definitely be overwhelming and so infuriating.

But I try to use that fire to fuel my work. Whenever I feel enraged or disappointed, it makes me want to prove that as a woman, I can do just as well, or even better, than the ones who belittle me. Sort of like, fighting fire with fire kind of thing.

What is success to you?

For me, success is being at peace with what I have now or being able to feel happy in difficult situations. Finding the light in things, that’s successful for me. Again, appreciating the little things helps me be successful on my own terms!

Any parting words of wisdom you wish to share with us?

To be honest, I used to be a perfectionist and every time I used to struggle, I would always go to my close friend. He always said to me, “Just laugh it off, Tat,” and from then on those words just stuck to me. Now, whenever I’m in a horrible situation, I remember those words and try to find something funny about it, then laugh about it. ‘Cause I think if we keep letting ourselves to just be sad about it, we’re not gonna find a way out.

Learning to trust ourselves is not an easy feat to do, but Tatyana Almira has shown us the wonders waiting for us on the other side. From her, we’ve heard the importance of paying attention to the little things in life and the merits of enjoying life the way it is.

Once again, APUINA sincerely thanks Tatyana Almira for her time and encouraging insights.

Stay safe and healthy.

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