Universitas Airlangga Initiates World Universities Association for Community Development

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UNAIR NEWS – Universitas Airlangga continues to expand its contribution as one of Indonesia’s best universities in international arena. One of the efforts was realized by Universitas Airlangga through the Community Service Institute (LPM).

Universitas Airlangga initiated the establishment of World Universities Association for Community Development (WUACD) on Friday, November 30 in Amerta Hall, 4th Floor, Management Office Campus C Universitas Airlangga. It is started with the event titled WUACD Kick-Off Meeting Universitas Airlangga.

This formation is based on an agreement that academic interaction with colleagues abroad has a significant role in social and economic influences in global issues. Therefore, to accommodate the community development discourse, Universitas Airlangga is proud to initiate and announce World Universities Association for the Community Development conference themed “Community Development: Regional Challenges and Opportunities”.

WUACD or World Universities Association for Community Development will be fully integrated into the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), Japan, Korea, China, Australia, Africa, Europe and America.

There are four main pillars.  WUACD for Improving Children’s Health; WUACD for Poor Social and Economic Development; WUACD for the Development of Marginal Education; and WUACD for Environmental Problems.

The meeting was held, first, to start the establishment of World Universities Association for Community Development (WUACD). Second, to unite universities in the world for community development. And, thirdly to prepare and implement collaboration of community development or outreach programs between universities for each country.

Rector of Universitas Airlangga Prof. Dr. Muhammad Nasih, SE., MT., Ak., CMA., said that the initiation WUACD was based on the facts that have existed so far, especially the emergence and problems in the world that still need to get serious attention from all parties. Starting from the problems of individuals, social society, to the consequences of development and technological progress.

“Simply put, the world still faces many problems. There are diseases, there is hunger, there is poverty, there is unemployment, and there are problems related to global warming . There are various issues, “he said.

For those realities, according to Prof. Nasih, these problems cannot be solved individually. It requires the involvement of each related element in resolving any problems that occur in each country.

“They must be handled together so synergy is created,” he said.

Prof. Nasih explained that WUACD was formed to offer efforts to deal with problems together. In particular, answering how to deal with various problems faced by the community can be resolved more effectively and more efficiently.

Meanwhile, Secretary of WUACD Dr. Pratiwi Soesilawati, drg., M. Kes., PA (K) said that WUACD would become a new body at Universitas Airlangga that favored community service activities or international community service.

“The kick-off meeting was initiated by Universitas Airlangga,” he said.

It was an effort to make Airlangga University a center for community development activities in several countries, especially on five continents. In the kick-off or launch event, there were delegates from 18 representatives, from five continents. There are continents from Australia, America, Africa, Asia and Europe.

“We will later carry out various community development activities . With Airlangga (Universitas Airlangga, ed) as the  center or initiator, “he said.

WUACD is expected to increase the number of inbound and outbound program. It is good for lecturers, educational staff, and students. The hope is that in every country collaborate with Universitas Airlangga through science technopark of Universitas Airlangga.

In addition to being a research space, it marks the presence and activity of UNAIR in its efforts to help solving world problems. In the end, it helped bring UNAIR as a pioneer of community development in the world.

“The participants were also very enthusiastic. A number of countries have also sent invitations and will immediately send their lecturers and students to UNAIR. Even since January, Malaysia has invited us (UNAIR, ed) to come there, “he said.

On the other hand, one of the delegates named Sheikh Samman Ahmad Hasanain from Al-Azhar Egypt expressed his enthusiasm for the initiation of the activity. He acknowledged the large contribution of universities in solving community problems in each country. Collaboration and activeness of each party will facilitate efforts to solve those problems.

“This is very good, hopefully in the future this kind of collaboration, this kind of collaboration can be strengthened and can have a significant impact on the closest community and the world, especially in an effort to solve problems in each country, ” he said. (*)