President Jokowi Inaugurates 2017 National Conference of Indonesian Rectors Forum

By Office of Assistant to Deputy Cabinet Secretary for State Documents & Translation     Date 2 Februari 2017
Category: News
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President Jokowi opens the 2017 Conference of Indonesian Rectors Forum at the Jakarta Convention Center (JCC), Jakarta, Thursday (2/2). (Photo: PR/Jay)

President Jokowi opens the 2017 Conference of Indonesian Rectors Forum at the Jakarta Convention Center (JCC), Jakarta, Thursday (2/2). (Photo: PR/Jay)

President Joko ‘Jokowi’ Widodo hopes that the 2017 National Conference of Indonesian Rectors Forum will create educational concepts that change the mentality of our nation to become a more competitive, innovative nation to win the global competition with other nations. This was enunciated by President Jokowi when opening the 2017 National Conference of Indonesian Rectors Forum at the Jakarta Convention Center (JCC), Jakarta, Thursday (2/2) morning.

Previously, the President said that in the increasingly fierce global competition, the key to survive and win the competition to achieve progress relies on the strength of human resources. “Therefore, we must dare to make leaps in education which creates human resources who have the work ethic, high creativity and innovation, and dare to compete,” the President said.

The President said that this year the Government will issue a new policy in the field of economy, namely the policy of economic equality. In order to materialize economic equality, the President hopes that universities can contribute to galvanize our human resources to become human resources who have integrity, the iron will, the courage to compete in a spirit of mutual cooperation.

The President explained that 42 percent of Indonesian workforces are primary school (SD) graduates, 66 percent are SD – SMP (junior high school) graduates, and 82 percent are SD-SMP-SMA (senior high school)/SMK (vocational school) graduates. “This is the reality. Therefore, there should be an acceleration in order to improve their skills,” the President said.

On that occasion, President Jokowi highlighted the conditions of the SMK that he used to visit. First, the equipment which is used to train maybe out of date for 20-30 years. Second, regarding the teachers, most of them are normative.

The SMK, the President added, should not like SMA, which is almost 70 – 80 percent are the existing normative teachers. Math teacher, chemistry teacher, biology teachers, religious teachers, Indonesian teacher, English teacher. It should be 70 – 80 percent of teachers who can train the matters relating to the garment, which deals with automotive assembling, or can run Computer Numerical Control machines. “This is the fact on the ground that I encountered. And this is our homework if we want to upgrade our human resources,” the President said.

With regard to the majors in SMK, according to the President, there are only engine department, construction department, electricity department. “That is all I know. It should be, for example, IT network, applications, and animation,” the President said.

Meanwhile, according to the President, the universities should dare to change the majors. He questioned the absence of logistics department which is much needed today as well as majors in retail, a specialty of the online store.

The President reiterated that the task of universities is looking ahead what the future will be, and gives suggestion to the Government: Pak, be watchful about logistics platform, retail platform, online store as they could erode the traditional markets and warung (stalls). What we have prepared for this. “This is what I said earlier: preparing human resources in the future, our vision for 50-100 years ahead, what human resources we have to prepare,” the President said.

According to the President, if we are to compete in IT, the industry, it is difficult to pursue another country. Therefore, we should see what our strength is. Moreover, the President thought whether we should develop the core business in the field of arts and culture, which later linked to the tourism economy. He mentioned that when there is an event, no countries is presenting dance like we have now. Meanwhile, in Indonesia, we have various dances from Sabang to Merauke, which are more than 10,000 or 15,000 dances. “This is our plus point. And if we connect them with our tourism economy, our natural beauty, may it be the strength of our country in the future. This has become the thoughts of our professors in our universities,” the President concluded.

Attending the event were Coordinating Minister for Human Development and Culture Puan Maharani, Minister of Research and Technology and Higher Education M. Nasir, and Minister of State Secretary Pratikno. (DND/JAY/ES) (MUR/YM/Naster).

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