A total of 15 universities from 9 countries in ASEAN from 23 to 27 May 2011 will participate in The 9th ASEAN Youth Cultural Forum at UGM. The countries are: Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei Darussalam, Thailand, Philippines, Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam. This event is one of the annual activities of the ASEAN University Network (AUN).
According to the UGM Executive Secretary, Drs. Djoko Moerdiyanto, M.A, UGM has been the host of this event for the second time. In 2005, UGM also hosted the ASEAN Youth Cultural Forum. "This is the second time UGM hosts the ASEAN Youth Cultural Forum. In we also hosted the same event in 2005," said Djoko to the reporters on the sidelines of the activity conducted at the Koesnadi Hardjasoemantri Cultural Center (PKKH), Tuesday (24/5).
Djoko added that the event raises the theme Arts: Identity and Diversity in Unity is expected to bridge students in ASEAN to share ideas and experiences. The relationship and communication through art and culture will make students and universities in ASEAN closer. "The close ties through cultural diplomacy hopefully will improve the development of courses, development of academic quality, student exchanges and others," said Djoko.
Students will participate in various activities, among others: workshops, performances of traditional music and dance, lectures, culinary, and fieldtrip to tourism villages. For the closing ceremony, performances and staging will be presented involving all participants of the ASEAN Rainbow. "This time, for example, there are lectures about art and culture given by Prof. Heddy Shri Ahimsa Putra, M.A, Ph.D., and Prof. Dr. Timbul Haryono, M.Sc.," he said.
At the same place, Organizing Committee, Dra. Rio Rini Diah Moehkardi, M.A, said that an ASEAN country which is unable to attend the ASEAN Youth Cultural Forum this year is Myanmar. Indonesian Universities that join the AUN are UGM, UI, ITB, and Airlangga University. "However, this time only UGM and UI participate in this event," Rio added.
Currently, there are 23 universities in ASEAN which have joined AUN. However, for this year only 15 universities that are participating in the event. Some other universities participated in the activities are UI, Brunei Darussalam University, National University of Laos, University of Malaya, National University of Singapore, Chulalongkorn University of Thailand, and Vietnam National University of Hanoi. "In total there are 90 participants of students and lecturers in the event," said Rio.