Kiswanto (52) was seen wiping away tears as he watched his youngest child and wife featured in a video profiling the families of new UGM students who received 100% tuition subsidy.
His youngest child, Putri Atmawan Pujaningsih (18), was accepted into Dental Hygiene at the Faculty of Dentistry.
Kiswanto was one of the four representative parents featured in the video, specially invited by the UGM Directorate of Student Affairs for the New Student Parent Gathering on Monday (31/7).
Kiswanto was among the 4,000 parents of new students who were invited. Not all parents were invited to the event, given that the capacity of the Grha Sabha Pramana hall was insufficient to accommodate the 10,106 new students.
Fortunately for Kiswanto, he was invited and selected to deliver a speech on behalf of the parents.
He, who resides in West Sumbawa, West Nusa Tenggara, works as a casual employee and has worked as an agricultural extension assistant for the West Sumbawa government for over 15 years.
“Being able to study at this campus is certainly a source of pride for us as parents, as our sons and daughters can enter the best university in Indonesia—a dream for many other Indonesian children out there,” Kiswanto said in his speech.
After delivering the speech, Kiswanto and the four representative parents receiving the 100% subsidy were invited onto the stage to receive laptop assistance from the rector to support their children’s academic activities.
UGM Rector Professor Ova Emilia, MD, and Vice-Rector for Student Affairs, Community Service, and Alumni Dr. Arie Sujito symbolically handed over laptops to each parent.
During the event, the rector conversed with Mukhlis (46), the father of Muhammad Arifin Ilham (18), who was accepted into International Relations at the Faculty of Social and Political Sciences.
Mukhlis, from Lam Geu Eu Village, Peukan Bada, Aceh Besar, was a victim of the 2004 tsunami. His home was devastated, and he and his family spent months in evacuation shelters.
Mukhlis currently runs a grocery store to support his family. His monthly income averages between Rp1-1.5 million.
“Where was your child accepted?” the rector asked at the start of their dialogue.
“In International Relations,” he answered.
“Is this your first child?”
“The eldest of three siblings,” Mukhlis replied.
“What are your hopes for your child?”
“I am quite proud that my child was accepted into Universitas Gadjah Mada. I hope he will succeed.”
“Congratulations once again. I hope your child becomes a source of pride for your family,” the rector said.
Next was Indah from Kediri, East Java, the mother of Yosia Deby Hasibuan, who was accepted into Nutrition and Health at the Faculty of Medicine, Public Health, and Nursing.
“Who chose to study Nutrition at UGM?” Dr. Arie Sujito asked.
“It was her own choice to study at UGM. We were genuinely anxious, considering our economic conditions. How will she manage in the big city and at such a prestigious university? Thank God we received a one-hundred percent subsidy. Hopefully, she will complete her studies on time,” Indah said.
In addition to showcasing videos, UGM introduced its leaders individually to the families. There were also presentations on academic and student activities by Vice-Rector for Education and Learning, Professor Wening Udasmoro.
Author: Gusti Grehenson