Ariesta Lestari

Why did you choose Monash?

The global reputation, especially in my country, Indonesia. Monash University is known for its high academic standard and producing high quality students. The multidisciplinary range of research and the high standard of the IT faculty contributed to my choice. I met my supervisor, Dr. Grace Rumantir, before I considered applying for my PhD degree. She encouraged me and helped me to apply for a scholarship.

Describe your area of research.

Forest fires in tropical peatland have become an environmental problem in Indonesia in the province of Central Kalimantan, causing significant damage to peatland ecology and the landscape. Indonesia does not have a comprehensive fire model to understand why surface peatland fires happen or to predict the probability of their escalation. My research is looking at a mechanism that can provide information about a fire before it happens to save the forest for our future generations.

What is a your favourite memory or highlight about Monash?

A highlight has been meeting and interacting with students from different cultures and backgrounds. I also presented my research at international conferences, such as PACIS 2016 in Taiwan.

Apart from study, what other activities are you involved in?  

I have joined a dance group with the Indonesian community and I have volunteered for some Monash Postgraduate Association activities.