As time draws to a close of another UNISTAFF programme, I feel the need to say something, mostly because this is the last year for ISOS carrying out UNISTAFF.
I call them The Three Musketeers. I think they also see themselves that way. And looking up the original Three Musketeers story, I think it is appropriate. Although you most likely cannot see them as Athos, Porthos and Aramis but seven years ago, I was a d’Artagnan, leaving home to become a Musketeer at the training ground that is ISOS, University of Kassel, Witzenhausen Germnay, determined to defend the honor of Indonesian Higher Education 🙂
So who are these three gentlemen who I love to call the Musketeers?
I’ll start with Siawuch Amini. Sia Amini is the passionate researcher. Always has a lot to say, and it often comes out as jumbled words on the board. The images I have of Sia are those of true researcher who is most happy in the field, in the laboratory or in front of his computer, so when he’s the classroom, he sometimes looks out of place, and I also sometimes have a hard time understanding him. But beneath the grumpy exterior, he’s a lovable guy.
Then we have Matthias Wesseler. Matthias is the quintessential teacher. His concept of “educating someone is lighting a candle, not filling a empty glass” is one principle that I hold on to this day. Motivation is the key to unlocking a student’s potential, so that is what I continue to try to do in my students. Soft spoken, quiet, his optimistic look on life is uplifting and infectious.
What can I say about Michael Fremerey? The ideas he throws at someone are so often thought provoking and they incite emotions in you that never come up otherwise. He is the true sparring partner for me, patiently listening to my ideas, arguments, complaints and what not. Our discussions are always lively. Spreading the message of Change and Leadership is his calling, and he truly has contibuted to my personal change.
Together, these three have collectively trained around 400 university staff, young (and not so young) apprentices, ‘d’Artagnan’s who come to seek guidance at UNISTAFF. Most of them have moved on to become very important people at their institutions, agents-of-change who managed to create change on different levels. Some are quiet and never heard from again, but that’s okay, because you can’t expect all of them to grow and develop. What they have done is amazing. I can only hope that after seven years, I am now worthy to be the fourth (or fortieth, or four hundreth) Musketeer and stand beside them.
And so as the 2008 UNISTAFF comes to a close, I (virtually) stand up to honor these three gentlemen who truly embodied the spirit of the Musketeers “All for One, and One for All”.