Global Business Guide Indonesia

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Joint Research | Student Exchange
Unika Atma Jaya | Prof. Dr. Ir. M.M. Lanny W. Pandjaitan, M.T.
Prof. Dr. Ir. M.M. Lanny W. Pandjaitan, M.T.

We have been at the forefront of new fields in academia such as biotechnology, which we introduced as a new faculty in 2002

Prof. Dr. Ir. M.M. Lanny W. Pandjaitan, M.T., Rector

Established over fifty years ago, Atma Jaya Catholic University of Indonesia is a longstanding educational institution in the country’s higher education sector. What can you tell us about your university’s background and its strategies going forward?

Atma Jaya Catholic University was founded in 1960 and has over the years evolved from our initial focus on economics and business administration to now offer courses in eight different faculties. In line with our emphasis on high quality education, several of these faculties have been formally recognised for academic excellence. Our university has also received awards from the government in the category of best university in Jakarta for quality assurance and academic atmosphere, and is ISO certified. In addition to this we now have post-graduate programs, bringing our total number of programs from the undergraduate to doctorate degree level to 27. With over 11,000 students, we have been at the forefront of new fields in academia such as biotechnology, which we introduced as a new faculty in 2002.

For the future, we need to make the decision as to which of our departments will become the priority going forward and will do so based upon market needs. At present, we have centred our growth strategy on the medicine faculty given the context of Indonesia’s introduction of universal healthcare, and now have one of the country’s best study programs in medicine. We have also sought to develop our psychology department, which was first established in 1992, through the introduction of a doctorate degree program. It is also our plan to actively improve upon the standard of education in Eastern Indonesia, through initiatives such as training programs for elementary school teachers. To date, we have worked with more than 250 teachers based in Papua.

Given the context of its being identified as a key driver of continued social and economic progress, what is your outlook for the education sector in Indonesia?

The future of Indonesia’s education sector is closely tied to the upcoming implementation of the ASEAN Economic Community in 2015. Since last year, we have prepared for this by adhering to the government’s framework for developing Indonesian human resources, as a means of ensuring that our labour force will be competitive within a more integrated ASEAN. In Indonesia we have more than 3,200 private universities and Atma Jaya as one of the top ten is well positioned to boost the higher education sector to produce skilled graduates ready to compete with human resources from other Southeast Asian markets.

To best prepare for a future in which the education sector will play an even more significant role, we will open a third campus in BSD by 2016 that will serve as our human development centre. Our existing campus in Semanggi will then move to focus on being a national development centre, while the Atma Jaya campus in Pluit is to become a health development centre.

How has your university set about attracting Indonesia’s most talented lecturers, researchers and academics?

Our university has in place a system whereby we recruit talented individuals upon their completion of a master’s degree program and then provide them with the opportunity to pursue doctorate degree studies at Atma Jaya.


These individuals go on to become longstanding members of our faculty with the highest qualifications. In fact, we encourage all of our faculty members to pursue advanced degrees and provide them with full financial support should they wish to study at universities abroad.

Most of our faculty members also attain the status of ‘certified lecturer’, granted by the Indonesian government. The process of obtaining this accreditation can be long and arduous, but we make sure to provide our lecturers with all the resources needed to apply successfully.

Where does Atma Jaya stand from a partnership with international universities point of view?

We have considerable experience in this type of cooperation, having worked with universities based in Taiwan, Germany, Japan and Australia. Our university is particularly open to partnerships for student exchange and research. Much of our joint research is focused on the field of biotechnology and herbal products, and we have benefited substantially from the involvement of foreign universities in that they offer expertise in developing commercial applications for research findings. Working with Korean universities, as an example, facilitated the creation and marketing of anti-aging cream using locally sourced plants.

We are also interested in collaborating for practicum programs, similar to our cooperation with a consortium of Australian universities who send their students to our campus to learn about Indonesia. To provide visiting Australian students with a better understanding of the local market, we send them to Indonesian companies so as to gain a first-hand experience of business here.

Increasingly aware of the advantages of hiring Indonesians for key executive positions, multinationals are now very open to working with local universities for internships and training programs. What other opportunities do you see for undertaking student training initiatives with multinationals in Indonesia?

We have in place agreements to work with universities based in Korea and Taiwan to send our students to obtain MBAs there before returning to Indonesia to work for multinationals from these countries. These students thus become attuned to working within both an Indonesian and international business environment, which positions them as ideal candidates for management and executive level positions at international companies operating in Indonesia. We hope to create further ties to leading multinationals for the purpose of recruitment, and will build upon our existing successful partnerships with foreign companies such as Bosch.

As a final message, what would you like our readers at GBG Indonesia to remember about Atma Jaya?

As an Indonesian Catholic university, we have a legacy to uphold from our founders to be a leading provider of high quality education to all Indonesians. Our values are very much rooted in the belief that everyone should have access to excellent higher education, irrespective of socio-economic standing.

Global Business Guide Indonesia - 2015

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