In 2021, the ACICIS Agriculture Professional Practicum (APP) will be offered virtually, with the support of the Australian Government’s New Colombo Plan.
Launched in 2019, this program is suitable for undergraduate students, postgraduate students, and early career professionals.
The APP is a six-week program that consists of intensive Indonesian language instruction at Atma Jaya University, English language lectures by local practitioners and experts in the fields of agriculture, food science, environment and resource management, and a supervised practicum placement with a local or international agricultural, agribusiness, or resource management organisation. The program runs from early January to mid-February each year.
The program is designed to cater for students with no existing Indonesian language skills. Candidates with existing language skills will, however, be welcome.
Indonesia is rich in natural resources with the second highest biodiversity of any country in the world. Sharing a strategic waterway with Australia, Indonesia’s fish-rich waters also make it one of the biggest seafood producers in the world, with main commodities including tuna, shrimp and seaweed. With 45% of workers in Indonesia engaged in agriculture and 31 million hectares of cultivated land, Indonesia is the third largest producer of rice in the world and also a leading producer of sugarcane, cassava, spices, coffee, cocoa, palm oil and rubber. Despite this, Indonesian agricultural policy is prioritising the diversification of food sources away from cereals, presenting unique challenges for the agriculture and food science sectors. Indonesia is strategically important to Australia as a principal cattle trade partner and has great potential for further bilateral trade partnerships.
This experience provided me with opportunities and skills I could never learn in a classroom environment – ACICIS Past Participant
The main aims of the APP are to:
- Provide students with a practical learning experience with a Host Organisation in the Indonesian agriculture sector; and
- To develop students’ knowledge of Indonesian agriculture and agribusiness practices, and the application these practices within Indonesia’s agriculture sector; and
- Enhance bilateral understanding through the creation of new partnerships between Australian and Indonesian counterparts, and to serve as a medium for the exchange of ideas in the field of agriculture and related fields.
The structure of the six-week program is as follows:
- 40 hours of intensive Indonesian language classes at Atma Jaya University, designed to give participants basic Indonesian language capacity;
- 30 hours of seminars, tutorials and virtual fieldtrips led by industry experts and practitioners from Indonesia’s agricultural sector; and
- A 160 hour supervised practicum placement to give participants an (English-speaking) professional experience, within an Indonesian or international organisation operating within Indonesia’s agricultural sector.
An Academic Program Officer (APO) is assigned for the duration of the APP to oversee all aspects of the program, including the supervision of its academic content. The APO also acts as the primary source of guidance and advice for students. The APO is available for student consultations on a regular schedule or by appointment. Since the pilot iteration of the program in 2019, the position of Academic Program Officer has been held by Mr Michael Sheehy.
Participating students are also allocated a workplace mentor at their practicum host organisation who will supervise a student’s work within the organisation for the duration of the student’s practicum placement. Participants must endeavour to regularly meet with their workplace mentor (as a guide, approximately three times a week) throughout the placement. Over the course of the program, the APO should be invited to attend at least two meetings between the student and their host organisation mentor.
All ACICIS programs operate under the direction of the ACICIS Resident Director, Dr Adrian Budiman, assisted by administrative staff in both Australia and Indonesia, assisted by administrative staff in both Australia and Indonesia. ACICIS’ administrative staff will check in with participants throughout the program and are available during business hours to assist with any concerns.
Virtual Internship Notes
- Applicants should be aware that they are applying for the program, not a specific placement. Participants must therefore accept that they may not be placed in their desired choice. In addition, all ACICIS placements with organisations depend entirely on the goodwill and preparedness of such organisations to host participants. Such organisations retain the right to withdraw from the program or vary the number of participants they host at any stage. Therefore, while acting in good faith in preparing participants for placements, ACICIS cannot guarantee any specific internship site and participants must accept this need for flexibility as a condition of participation in the Agricultural Professional Practicum.
- Program participants are required to have access to a personal laptop or computer, and a reliable internet connection throughout the duration of the program.
- Participants are encouraged to have a work-space set up with their homes, so that they are able to attend all components of the program without distraction. A comfortable space with suitable lighting is recommended.
- Participants will be conducting meetings via Zoom and other online learning platforms and are required to dress and groom themselves as they ordinarily would for university or an in-person professional placement. More information on expected dress codes will be provided in pre-program correspondence.
- Orientation is compulsory for all APP participants. If you cannot attend orientation then you will, unfortunately, not be able to participate in the program.