Monday, May 28, 20123Monday, May 28, 2012
or Indonesians determined to make a larger impact on the world around them, studying overseas is one of the preferred ways of opening the doors to a brighter career and future. And no other country is as sought after by Indonesians for this purpose than Australia. According to Australia’s Department of Innovation, Industry, Science, Research and Tertiary Education, there are roughly 18,000 enrollments from Indonesian students currently studying in Australia, mostly in its universities and other centers of higher education.
Indonesians have long been drawn to Australia due to its quality of life and high educational standards. But for traditionally close-knit Indonesian families, another attractive consideration is the relative closeness of the two neighbors.“Studying in Australia is closer to home [compared to Great Britain or the United States],” said Esti Wandari, who graduated with a bachelor’s degree in screen production from Griffith University’s Queensland College of Art in 2000. “Airline ticket fares are cheaper, and most capitals of [Australian] states have flights to Indonesia.” Esti, now a lecturer in broadcast communications at the University of Indonesia, added that the competitive price of a university education in Australia was another key to her decision to seek her degree at Griffith University. Like Esti, many Indonesians have taken advantage of the availability of scholarships and the fees ranging from A$9,000 to A$14,000 a year for Foundation Studies and A$12,000 to A$19,000 for English language training.
For many prospective Indonesian students, the desire to improve their English skills, particularly at a more advanced level, is a powerful incentive to studying in Australia. The country’s education system is renowned for its English language courses, which are flexible yet regulated to ensure high standards. Students have a number of internationally recognized English proficiency tests to choose from, such as the Cambridge Test, Pearson Test, TOEFL [Test of English as a Foreign Language] as well as IELTS [International English Language Testing System]. However, the best way to learn English is through practical, hands-on application. “Education in Australia requires a lot of essay writing, which develops our writing skills in English,” said Kathryn Parapak, who graduated from the University of Tasmania in 1998 with a bachelor’s degree in commerce.Once there, many students are quick to make the most of Australia’s multicultural society and find room for personal development. “[Living and studying in Australia] has taught me to work and socialize with people from different countries,” said Kathryn, who currently works as the head of corporate marketing and communications at AIA Financial. “Studying abroad also teaches one to be more independent.” Over 400,000 students from over 180 countries studied in Australian education institutions in 2011. And traveling to Australia to learn does not mean that prospective students have to begin at square one. The National Office of Overseas Skills Recognition enables Australian institutions to recognize qualifications from other countries, allowing for the recognition of a student’s previous studies.
Australia’s universities are renowned for their high-quality teaching and research facilities. Lecturers are experts in their fields who are eager to pass their learning and experience on to students. There have been 11 Australian Nobel Laureates, and Australia has an impressive list of scientific achievements; inventions such as the anthrax vaccine, penicillin and the cochlear implant as well as GPS and WiFi, that have had a huge impact right around the globe. Total Australian Government support for science, research and innovation is almost A$9 billion, including A$22 million for international Postgraduate Research Scholarships. “A postgraduate degree from Australia has given me more opportunities to explore my chosen fields of education and psychology,” said Sri Purwati, known as Ninong, who graduated from James Cook University with a master’s degree in clinical and health psychology in 2000. “[Postgraduate studies] also gave me the chance to meet professionals with the same interests,” said Ninong, who works as a therapist specializing in autistic children. “Since my interest is in special-needs education, a field with relatively few [practitioners], my degree improved my competitive edge.” Thatedgeisfurtheredthroughthe state-of-the-artresearchfacilitiesat manyAustralianuniversities,meaning studentsgraduatewiththeskillsand expertiserequiredtoexcelina fast-changingworld.Since2008,the AustralianGovernmenthasinvested morethan$1.8billioninworld-class sciencefacilitiesacrossthenation.
Another major factor behind the success of Indonesians in Australia’s higher education sector lies in the “Australian Way” of studying, which focuses on practical learning, creativity, independent thought and debate. Lecturers aim to make students thoroughly understand the subject matter instead of merely memorizing it. “The methods of teaching [in Australia] are interactive and engaging” said Devyandra Kusumaatmadja, who graduated from Griffith University with a bachelor’s degree in print and broadcast journalism in 1998. “The lecturers would encourage their students to ask questions,” said Deyvandra, who works in Aora Satellite TV’s content division. “The experience made me more critical, discerning and perceptive.”Interactive, practical and efficient, the Australian higher education system is also built for speed, averaging about three years to complete an undergraduate program. The benefits do not end there. Universities like the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology have formed close partnerships with international institutes and firms like Airbus, BMW, Volkswagen Group and Siemens. One Indonesian who benefited from those partnerships is Eri Setyadi, who graduated from RMIT in 1999 with a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering and works as a technical field manager with BMW. “RMIT is a reputable university which has good relations and projects with various engineering companies around the world. So it gave me [an] advantage when it comes [to the job market],” he said. This fully supportive, holistic approach to education is the reason why thousands of Indonesians travel to Australia each year to further their educations. The quality of that education can be measured in the stories of this year’s Australian Alumni Awards nominees.
Opening a Wider Window to the World Through the ‘Australian Way’ of Education
Welcometothisspecial supplementtointroducethe finalistsintheAustralianAlumniAwards2012.TheAlumniAwardscelebratethesuccessofthe manyIndonesianswhohave studiedinAustralia.We recognizethecontributionof thesealumnitotheirchosen fieldsandtowardIndonesia’sownprogress.Inreachingouttoouralumnicommunity,weintheAustralian Embassyhaveonceagainbeen overwhelmedbythe enthusiasticresponsesin nominatingoutstanding Indonesiansfortheseawards.TheAustralianalumnicommunity—universities,colleges,employers,familiesandfriends—haveputforwardanoutstandinggroupofpeople asnomineesandfinalistsforthe awards.Behindeachnomineeisastoryofpersonalachievement.Andtheseindividualsinturnare shapingthefutureofIndonesia.Alumniplayakeyrolein underpinningthestrong relationshipbetweenIndonesiaandAustralia,sotheseawardsareagoodopportunityforustocelebratelifelongfriendshipsandconnectionsbetweenour twocountries.TheAustralianEmbassyisproudthatAustraliaisatop destinationforIndonesiansstudyingoverseas.Wearekeen toseetheseeducationallinkscontinuetogrowthroughscholarships,professional exchangesandcontinuing education.Inthissupplementyouwill alsofindprofilesofsomeofour pastAlumniAwardrecipients.Theycomefromallwalksoflife andareachievinggreatthingsin theirchosenfields.Wehavealsotakenthisopportunitytolookatother importantelementsofthe relationshipbetweenIndonesiaandAustralia.Ourtwocountriesaregoodfriendsandstrategicpartners.Asyoucanseebythe breadthofarticleshere,we havestrongbondsonmany levelsincludinginculture,business,defense,developmentandeducation.Pleasejoinmein congratulatingthefinalistsin theAustralianAlumniAwards2012.Wewillpublishthe recipientsintheJakartaGlobe inearlyJune.
A Message From Ambassador Greg Moriarty
Australia’s universities are renowned for their high-quality teaching and research facilities. Lecturers are experts in their field who are eager to pass their learning and experience on to students.
AustraliaAwardsisanAustralian governmentscholarshipprogramtopromotesustainabledevelopmentandexcellenceineducationintheAsiaPacific.In2010,atotalof459AustralianAwardswereprovidedtoIndonesiansand25toAustralianstopursuefurtherknowledgeineachcountry,makingIndonesiathelargestbilateralrecipientofAustraliaAwards.AustraliaAwardsbringtogetherthe twomajorAustraliangovernmentfundedscholarshipprograms—the AustralianDevelopmentAwardsandEndeavourAwards.DevelopmentAwards,administeredbytheAustralianAgencyfor InternationalDevelopment(AusAID),isamajorcomponentofAustraliaAwardsandhasplayedasignificantroleinAustralia’sdevelopmentcooperationformorethan60years.Theawardsoffershortandlongterm studyopportunitiestoenhance leadership,knowledgeandtechnical skillstopartnergovernments,tertiary institutionsandstrategicorganizationsthataredriving sustainabledevelopmentinIndonesia.AusAID’sflagshipprogram,the AustralianDevelopmentScholarships,areprovidedforpost-graduatestudy andresearchinstrategicfieldsthatsupportIndonesia’sspecificdevelopmentneedsandfallunderfour prioritydevelopmentareas:sustainablegrowthandeconomicmanagement,democracyjusticeandgoodgovernance,investinginpeople,andsafetyandpeace.AusAIDencourageswomen,people withdisabilities,ethnicminoritiesandpeoplefromruralareastoapplyfor scholarships.Itaimstoensureequity andbroadparticipation.EndeavourAwardsisadministeredbytheAustralianDepartmentof Industry,Innovation,Science,ResearchandTertiaryEducation.Itisaninternationallycompetitive,merit-basedprogramthatprovidesopportunitiestostudy,doresearchandprofessionaldevelopmentinAustraliaforIndonesians(incoming)orin IndonesiaforAustralians(outgoing).TheEndeavourAwardsconsistof EndeavourPostgraduateAwards,EndeavourResearchFellowships,EndeavourExecutiveAwardsandEndeavourVocationalEducationandTrainingAwards.Theprogram encouragestheestablishmentof linkagesbetweenindividuals,organizationsandthetwocountries,whileshowcasingAustralia’scapacity asacenterforqualityeducation,researchandinnovation.Applicationsarenowopenfor AustraliaAwards.EndeavourAwardscloseonJune30,andAustralian DevelopmentAwardsonAugust17.
Furtherinformation,including eligibilityrequirements,isavailable atwww.australiaawards.gov.au.
Take Learning Further With Australian Scholarships
he Australian Alumni Awards provide Indonesians with one of the most concrete ways to gauge the value of seeking a higher education Down Under. For the past four years, the Alumni Awards have recognized outstanding talent, achievements and contributions made by Indonesians who have studied in Australia. At present, there are a large number of Australian alumni living and working in Indonesia, many of whom are leaders and innovators in their respective fields. You can find Australian alumni in prominent positions within the Indonesian government, as well as in fields as varied and wide-ranging as finance, academics and music. Well-prepared to make a significant impact on their home country through the excellent education they receive in Australia, these people are contributors to Indonesia’s sustainable economic and social development.Through the Alumni Awards, the Australian Embassy hopes to shine a light on these individuals’ remarkable achievements, and as such, the awards serve as the embassy’s largest public diplomacy event, accentuating the mutually beneficial relationship between the two neighbors. But being selected as an award-winner carries no small amount of responsibility. Winners are hoped to become unofficial ambassadors for Australia within their respective fields, highlighting the benefits and virtues of Australia as an excellent education destination for Indonesian students, academics and researchers. Additionally, the Australian Embassy hopes to increase ties between the two countries in the education and research sectors.Each year, the embassy hands out Alumni Awards to recognize the outstanding contributions Indonesians have made in categories such as education, the arts, national defense and entrepreneurship.On Saturday, the Australian Embassy, along with hundreds of attendees and community leaders, will come together for a gala awards ceremony in Jakarta to honor the finalists and 12 Indonesians selected as this year’s Australian Alumni Award winners.
The process of choosing this year’s award recipients was an exhaustive, multi-stage process.Beginning in February, a call was put out via local media outlets that the embassy was accepting nominations for worthy individuals in 10 of the categories. The nomination period was open until April 30.Then came the difficult part. A panel of judges, consisting of embassy representatives, sifted through the pile of nominations to make the first cut, whittling down the number of nominees to a maximum of four in each category. After the initial round of judging, the remaining nominees were then given a second look by a panel of judges not connected to the embassy. That panel completed the difficult task of choosing one winner in each category, and the names of those winners will remain secret until the awards ceremony on Saturday.
In addition to the 10 categories open to the nomination process, the embassy will also be selecting outstanding alumni in two other categories. The Inspirational Alumni Award is given to outstanding alumni whose work is truly an inspiration to others. They are Indonesians who have worked tirelessly toward a particular cause, driven by their passion for contributing to improvements in the lives of others.The Distinguished Alumni Award recognizes those who have made lifelong career achievements and contributions to Indonesia, as well as maintaining strong alumni links between Australia and Indonesia. The recipients of these two awards will be announced, along with the other winners, at the ceremony on Saturday evening.
A Spotlight on the Success of Our Australian Alumni
The Australian Alumni Awards are a good opportunity to celebrate lifelong friendships and connections between our two countries
See pages 6-7 for the full breakdown of this year’s categories and list of shortlisted nominees