Contributor: Magello Fenis | Editor: Supriyono
University life is not only about attending classes, participating in a lecture, or doing assignments at the library. While engaging in academic work is crucial, student participation in extracurricular activities and societies is also pivotal to shape a worthwhile and enriching educational experience.
Examples of such activities include joining clubs and organizations, engaging in volunteer work and community service, participating in student leadership and governance, as well as academic and non-academic competitions. These opportunities provide students with avenues to actively participate, pursue their interests, develop skills, and contribute to the vibrant community of the university.
Taking this into account, the International Office and Student Affairs (IOSA) at the Universitas Islam Internasional Indonesia (UIII) is not only making every effort to offer a range of support services that cater to the different needs of students but is also active in organizing and coordinating campus events that encourage student involvement, enhance social connections and foster cultural enrichment.
Currently, there are five active student academic organizations at UIII, namely, the Association of Social Science Students (ASSIST) at the Faculty of Social Sciences, the Ecobiz Student Association (ESA) at the Faculty of Economics and Business, the Islamic Studies Student Association (ISSA) at the Faculty of Islamic Studies, and the Education Student Association (Estudia) at the Faculty of Education.
In addition to the student academic organizations above, there is also an association called the International Students' Association (ISA UIII), which is dedicated to advance the academic and social interests of its members consisting of international students of UIII.
The establishment of these organizations is highly appreciated, especially by the International Office and Student Affairs (IOSA), as it creates opportunities for increased student participation.
Fachrul Rinaldi, UIII’s International Affairs Officer, stated that IOSA functions in ensuring the welfare of all students studying at the university including handling immigration procedures and permits for foreign students, proposing projects and fostering collaborations with external parties or international institutions.
Also, IOSA works in representing and promoting the university to a global audience, managing the admissions process for prospective students in each academic year, and providing advice and consultation to students throughout their tenure at UIII.
In this regard, the student organizations have the opportunity to propose and organize events or activities as long as they adhere to the guidelines and receive approval from the administration, Mr. Rinaldi emphasized.
Meanwhile, another UIII International Affairs Officer, Rivaldy Putro, recognized that indeed UIII students had prioritized their academic pursuits and excelled in various academic activities such as class performance, team projects, conferences, seminars, research papers, and presentations both locally and internationally.
However, when it comes to non-academic campus activities, there is still room for improvement in student participation. Despite being post-graduate students, the IOSA acknowledges the importance of student involvement for personal rejuvenation, networking, and enhancing professional skills.
“Our office is intended for all students, not just international students. It is essential for all students to be aware of and understand this. It is worth noting that our office name includes "student affairs” signifying that it is meant for all students. Any matters pertaining to student affairs can be addressed to us,” Mr. Putro concluded.
As an academic higher institution aiming for international recognition, UIII is committed to provide essential facilities to balance both academic and non-academic facilities for their students. Currently, UIII is hosting hundreds of students coming from different countries, making it a diverse and vibrant scholarly community.