Introducing Arkian Suryadarma

Photo courtesy of Arkian Suryadarma

May 3, 2012 marked the first day of Arkian Suryadarma’s positon as the new president of the Indonesian Fellowship Club (IFC). Wanting to provide students with a fun and educational environment, Suryadarma started his new leadership role by initiating plans that will allow his members to grow personally and academically, as well as providing the student body with the opportunity of learning about Indonesian culture.

IFC is a club for Indonesian students at BC. It promotes togetherness and harmony between members. The club was established to create an Indonesian community within the college environment. IFC is a place where Indonesian students can get to know one another, hang out and help each other with their studies.

“I felt grateful when I was elected, because I get to represent Indonesia, which is a part of my identity,” said Suryadarma. “I don’t see it as a burden; I felt honored.”

An upcoming event will being held by the IFC is a farewell party for the graduating Indonesian students at the end of this spring quarter. The farewell party is a tradition that IFC has had since the establishment of the club several years ago. Suryadarma commented, “Since most of us (Indonesians) are international students, our parents do not live here with us, so with this event, Indonesian students hopefully will feel less lonely and more supported.”

Being the new president of the IFC in Bellevue College, Suryadarma’s goal is to further share the Indonesian culture, such as its dance, music, games and foods with the rest of BC students. Planned activities are intended to promote interaction and communication between the club members as well as entice students of different nationalities to learn about the Indonesian culture.

During the interview, Suryadarma listed several events to show his plan for promoting the Indonesian culture. Among the events are an Indonesian food festival and an Indonesian games day.

The purpose of the food festival is to promote the traditional Indonesian dishes. Food will be bought from Indonesian restaurants and also be made by members of the club. The festival is also meant to promote the importance of a diverse community at Bellevue College.

The second event, the Indonesian games day, is planned for fall 2012. This time around, the event will involve promoting and educating other BC students about traditional Indonesian games, which many Indonesians played during their childhood. “I want to share the many fun games I played when I was a kid with my current college buddies. I want to show them how to play congklak (mancala), galah asin and especially engklek.”

In his spare time, Suryadarma enjoys playing soccer, swimming and rock climbing. He chose to be independent even though he has some relatives living in Washington. He lives with a host family in order to learn abut the American culture and improve his English.

Being born and raised in a different country and now living in the United States is a fascinating experience for Suryadarma. Suryadarma began attending Bellevue College in the fall quarter of 2011. His first impression of BC was that the college was really welcoming. He said that the advisors at school always meet his needs. Suryadarma intends to major in civil engineering. He plans to transfer to the University of Washington and become a successful civil engineer in the future.

Watch out for upcoming events scheduled by the Indonesian Fellowship Club. If you are interested in getting to know more about the club, you can e-mail Arki at