Opening Ceremony Darmasiswa Indonesian Scholarship Academic Year of 2013/2014
by BAYU PUTRA on 2013-09-04
On the October 13, they received a material regarding intercultural relationship. the key note speaker was Irid Farida Rachman Agoes from University of Indonesia (UI). In her explanation, the participants realize the purpose of the MC using expression ‘Can we start now?’. Irid explained to the participants that the expression basically is the instruction for the participants to start the program. However, because the participants were not familiar with that form of instruction, the participant ignored it. More than an hour Irid explained some of the politeness system and etiquettes common in Indonesia. One of them is about the small talk. Riding the public transportation will have the small talk with the passengers asking about your destination, age, occupation, even your income without introduce themselves. “Never say ‘It’s none of your businesses.” said Irid. The participants were astonished because of the explanation. Irid added that it was a common thing in Indonesia. The people just asked and they would forget it. The participant started understanding her explanation and nodded their head showing that they had already understood the Indonesian culture.
Introduction to Indonesian session was also very fun. Although they agreed that Indonesian language is easy to learn, the participants were still confused because some of new words they have learned have similar meaning. Zoe Mclaughin, an American student, raised her hand. She asked to the instructor, Wenny Oktavia from Indonesian Language Centre, ‘How do we use “kamu” and “anda”?’. Wenny explained that the word “kamu” can be used for addressing the close friend or younger person however you can still address them using “anda”. She also explained about the use of some expressions which have different meanings if they are written in English.
The participants followed the session with full of enthusiasm. They were eager spelling the Indonesian alphabets like a child spelling the letter A-Z one by one. The instructor encouraged them to do it enthusiastically and attentively so they would be able to speak in Bahasa less than 100 hours. However, some participants fell asleep during the session especially in the back row. Some of them used the empty chair for laying down their body. They got jet lag after having a very long journey from their country across the ocean especially for those who had just arrived a couple hours before the orientation.
The aim of the orientation is to give introduction to Indonesia in general. It is not only the language but also its culture and politeness system. Even in this orientation, they were also introduced to local foods. At lunch, they had rice, fried noodles, bean curd soup, marinated meat soy sauce, chili sauce, and prawn cracker. At dinner, the menu was lodeh tempe. At first, the participants were unwillingly eating the food but they encouraged themselves to taste the food. Some of them tried to eat up the dish on their plate. Next surprise was dominated by the entertainment. The committee entertained them using bamboo musical instruments. It was played by Saung Angklung Udjo. The participants even took a part singing the hits song when they were played.
Each participants had a mission when joining the Darmasiswa Scholarship. A Mexican, Sara Alicia De Los Cobos Garcia, had a curiosity in Javanese dance. She said that, the Javanese dance resembles the Mexican ones. Because of that reason, she applied for traditional dance in Art Institute of Indonesia (ISI) Surakarta. “I want to learn new style of dance.” She said.She promised after having this program, she would introduce the Javanese dance to Mexican artists. She hoped there will be more cultural exchange program between Indonesia and Mexico. It was different for Muhammad Zubaui Ogier. The Darmasiswa participant from South Afric applied for Craft Design Major in Art of Institute of Indonesia in Denpasar, Bali. He had more expectation to this program. He wanted to learn photography, paint of art, and the others. He said that from his perspective education is something which is expensive. When he heard there was a scholarship for having study here and the living expense in Indonesia is cheap, he applied for the program. He added also that Balinese art has the uniqueness which distinct from the others.
Enthusiasm of the participants surprised the head of Darmasiswa task force, Pangesti Wiedarti.the committee did not cover their international airfare tickets. The participants had to save some money to come to Indonesia. Most of the participants wanted to learn Indonesian Language, Arts, and Cultures. Only a few of them applied for Indonesian traditional medicine, engineering, and Islamic studies. After graduating from the university they are expected to promote Indonesia in their countries.
Based on experiences, there were some of the participants feel reluctant for going home after finishing their study. They chose to stay longer by extending their stay permit for looking another scholarship program. There were also some of them who chose to work or marry to the natives here. Pangesti emphasized that Darmasiswa Scholarship program is very effective for introducing Indonesia, especially for the countries whose people do not know much about Indonesia. Above all, this program proves that educational system in Indonesia can compete with the other countries.
translate : Secretariat Darmasiswa
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