All lecturers, education staff, and students of President University (PresUniv) are ready to implement and participate in Freedom Learning Freedom Campus (MBKM) program. This is the presentation's conclusion regarding the survey on MBKM conducted by the PresUniv team. This survey involves three categories of respondents, namely lecturers, education staff, and students. The presentation of the survey results was delivered in an international seminar on community service, which was held in a hybrid manner on 20-23 December 2021. Some participants and speakers attended offline, and some joined online.
In the seminar, Haris Herdiansyah, S.Psi., M.Sc., explained his research on MBMK sebagai Sumber Inovasi Model Pembelajaran untuk Membentuk Mahasiswa yang Berkarakter, Berkompetensi Unggul, dan Berwawasan Kebangsaan Melalui Pemanfaatan Teknologi Informasi. The research conducted by Haris and several of his colleagues received funding assistance from Program Penelitian Kebijakan Merdeka Belajar Kampus Merdeka dan Pengabdian Masyarakat Berbasis Hasil Penelitian dan Purwarupa Perguruan Tinggi Swasta (PTS), the Directorate General of Higher Education, Research and Technology, the Ministry of Education, Culture, Research and Technology. (Kemendikbud, Research and Technology) for the 2021 fiscal year.
According to Haris, their research aims to ensure that the implementation of MBKM at PresUniv runs well. It is done by identifying several determinants of success. There are three focus activities carried out by PresUniv, namely internships, Integrated Survival Experience (ISE), and Statespersonship Project (StatesPro). According to Haris, these three activities can have a significant impact on the success of the MBKM program at PresUniv.
At the beginning of the survey, Haris explained that most lecturers (62.9%) already knew about the MBKM program. Only 42% of education staff and 35% of students know about this program. Even though they only knew briefly about MBKM, both lecturers, staff, and students had received information that the Semester Credit Unit (SKS) value for this program was fairly high. This was expressed by 98.1% of lecturers, 85.3% of staff, and 91.1% of students.
Regarding internships, said Haris, this has been conducted by PresUniv since 2005. “Since the beginning, we have made internships a part of lecture activities with a minimum duration of one semester. So, at PresUniv, the internship is an activity that must be followed by all students with the guidance of lecturers. The credit score is also quite large, starting with 6 credits, and now it has become 9 credits. Now with the MBKM program, the value of the internship is 40 credits. For us, it is not a problem, although, in its implementation, it requires some adjustments,” he explained.
That is why, referring to the research results of Haris and his colleagues, as many as 80.9% of lecturers have been mentors for internships, 61.9% of them are also actively involved in discussions, meetings, and workshops related to the MBKM program, and 77% lecturers will encourage students to take part in the MBKM program. Meanwhile, for the education staff, as many as 53% of them considered the MBKM helpful program for students, and 66.7% would recommend this program to students.
From the student side, according to the survey results, as many as 69.1% have prepared themselves to take part in the MBKM program. Then, 74.7% of students also believe that the MBKM program will not make their study period longer. Furthermore, 83.4% of students believe that the MBKM program will provide additional competencies for them. That is why the survey results also show that 74.39% of students are very interested in the MBKM program and 72.26% would recommend to their friends to join this program.
Internship, New Path of Recruitment
Because it is mandatory, continued Haris, students are not on campus during the internship period. They work like employees of companies or other government agencies. “Even now, the Bureau of Internship & Career Center (ICC), which manages the internship program at PresUniv, has changed its concept. Previously, internships were an opportunity for students to learn and know the world of work, not anymore. Internships have become a new recruitment route. So, after the internship, it is hoped that students will be immediately recruited to join as employees of the company where they are doing their internships," said Haris. So, concluded Haris, internships as part of MBKM activities have been carried out by PresUniv since 2005.
Haris then disclosed the data provided by the ICC. He said, during 2018, as many as 50% of students who did internships were immediately offered work by the company where they did their internships. Then, during 2019 the figure increased again to 69%. By 2020, the figure will decrease to 56%. "That is because of the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. At that time, many companies postponed their internship programs and even some of them were forced to close their businesses,” said Haris.
Since 2020, PresUniv has also provided internship opportunities for students who want to have a career as an academic. “They can do internships as assistant professors who are lecturers at PresUniv, including doing joint research. Apart from that, they can also work in research institutions or conduct independent studies,” said Haris.
Meanwhile, the ISE program, said Haris, aims to develop students' entrepreneurial spirit. This is, of course, in line with entrepreneurial activities as a form of MBKM activities. PresUniv translates the ISE program into courses for two (2) semesters worth 12 credits. "Through this course, we encourage students to collaborate and innovate in creating goods or services, including solutions, that suit user needs," explained Haris. In addition, Haris emphasized that PresUniv wants to instill an entrepreneurial mindset in all students through this course. "That way, it is hoped that graduates will have the mindset to create jobs (job creators), no longer job seekers," said Haris.
After taking the ISE course, students who are interested in entrepreneurship are directed to join SetSail BizAccel, a business incubator founded by PresUniv in 2016. While joining SetSail BizAccel, students will be invited to identify various problems in the community and find solutions with various creative ideations and innovations. It was the idea that they would later develop as a start-up business.
While at SetSail BizAccel, students will be taught how to make business proposals, receive guidance from mentors consisting of business practitioners, and even meet potential investors. If appropriate, students will be guided to execute their ideas as their business.
Another subject that is in line with the MBKM program is Statepersonship. Indeed, Haris explained, Statepersonship is a combination of four Mata Kuliah Dasar Umum (MKDU), namely Religious Education, Citizenship, Pancasila, and Indonesian Language, all of which weigh 9 credits. He said only part of the course was done in the classroom, and the rest is done in an applied form in the field or called a Statepersonship Project. “Through this project, students are invited to identify various social problems in their immediate environment and formulate solutions. So, this is a kind of practice or direct application of the four MKDUs in the field, not in the classroom anymore," said Haris.
PresUniv has implemented the Statepersonship course for the past two years. For the Statepersonship Project, continued Haris, students are given the freedom to implement it. They can do it individually, but they can also do it in groups. He said, "This Statepersonship course is very much in line with several forms of activities in MBKM, such as working on projects in villages, teaching in schools, or humanitarian projects."