In accordance with the advice of the Indonesian government to practice physical distancing in the university area, President University requires all students to study at home, including the exchange students of the Darmasiswa program. For this reason, the International Office of President University has initiated an online learning program for Darmasiswa students. This was done to support the 2019/2020 Darmasiswa program of the Republic of Indonesia at President University. The Head of the International Office, Lambok Hermanto Sihombing, M.Hum., hopes that with this program, Darmasiswa students will continue to be enthusiastic to continue learning and their progress can be monitored.
The Darmasiswa program of the Republic of Indonesia itself is a prestigious scholarship funded by the Indonesian government to young people from partner countries to learn the Indonesian language and culture. Those who get the scholarship have the opportunity to study at a flagship campus designated by the Indonesian Ministry of Education and Culture (Kemendikbud) for a year. Because of the importance of this program, Lambok asked the Darmasiswa Program Manager at President University, Aris Masruri Harahap, M.Hum., together with a team of lecturers consisting of Hernawati W. Retno, M.Sc., and Dr. Bruno Rumyaru to be able to facilitate the needs of the learning process during the Darmasiswa program.
Regarding this matter, Aris let the Darmasiswa lecturer team at President University choose the desired teaching platform.
“This is actually in accordance with the direction of the university not to burden lecturers in teaching. Lecturers are allowed to choose the platform that maybe, the lecturer is more familiar with its features or with other considerations that it is easier for the students to access. So, the most important thing is students can still learn effectively and lecturers can still monitor the progress of their students even though via the internet,” said Aris.
Regarding this online learning process, Radwa Mohammed Osama Abdalla Elsaid Hewedy, a Darmasiswa program student from Egypt revealed, “The online learning process at President University is very good. Assignments like making videos are very effective in helping me learn to speak Indonesian.”
In line with Radwa, Nonsikelelo Angela Tshabangu from Zimbabwe also claimed to be satisfied with learning the Indonesian language and culture online.