YOGYAKARTA – An unusual thing happened during the inauguration of students of Universitas Gadjah Mada’s Graduate School. Among the 1,478 master and doctoral graduates, a mother and her son are inaugurated at the same period. Both even have completed the doctoral degrees. This is truly a rare occurence at a university.
The mother is Dr. Dra. Sri Budi Lestari (59) and her son is Dr. Budi Prasetyo (36). The mother majored in Culture and Media whilst her son Environment at the Graduate School. Both are also lecturers at Universitas Diponegoro Semarang.
Alongside the inauguration ceremony, Sri Budi Lestari aka Ayie on Thursday (23/4) was sitting on the wheelchair, accompanied by her husband, Didik Samadikun. Ayie said she had been using the wheelchair for the past five years. She fell ill and the muscles in her right thigh reduced in size. Doctors said she suffered from demyelinisasi. She once wanted to end her study due to her health problem. “For once I decided to stop, but my husband and son kept motivating me, even my promotor, Prof. Suhartono,” she said.
The lady with five grandchildren resumed her spirit and finally completed her doctoral education at UGM. During lectures, Ayie was accompanied by her husband. “My husband would even sit in classes and seminars to support me. It’s a coincidence he has retired so able to be there for me,” said Ayie.
After taking a leave for one semester due to her physical problem, Ayie finished her degree in six years and 4 months. She did not expect she would be inaugurated together with her son. She was proud to graduate at a senior age. “I want to inspire the young students, I have taught classes for 23 years. I still want to widen my knowledge,” she said.
The son, Budi Prasetyo Samadikun, did not expect to graduate at the same time with his mother, either. From the start, they kept motivating each other. Budi admires his mother for his enthusiasm and resilience in completing her education despite her shortcomings. Budi confessed it was even her mother who kept motivating him to focus on his study.