At the beginning of 2020, ACICIS Study Indonesia was thrilled to welcome a total of 16 students to participate in our Journalism Professional Practicum Program (JPP). These students were welcomed to Jakarta from five Australian universities, including Monash University, RMIT University, the University of Sydney, University of South Australia and the University of Tasmania, and two New Zealand universities, including Auckland University of Technology, and University of Canterbury. Twelve students completed this program with the assistance of a $3,000 New Colombo Plan mobility grant and two students received funding from Asia New Zealand Foundation to support their studies in Indonesia.

During the initial two weeks of the JPP, participants undertook an academic program, hosted by Atma Jaya Catholic University, which consisted of language classes, a series of seminars and field trips. The language classes were led by experienced teachers at Atma Jaya Language Learning Centre and helped to prepare students for their four-week professional placements.

In addition to these classes, students attended a series of seminars presented by professional practitioners of Journalism in Indonesia. The seminar series was presented by speakers with comprehensive knowledge of journalism in Indonesia and covered a range of topics such as Indonesian Politics, Australia Indonesia Relationship, Reporting on Human Rights, Environment and Foreign Correspondents. During the academic week, they also received training which was Prevention of Sexual Exploitation Assault and Harassment (PSEAH Training) delivered by Hollaback! Jakarta and a bonus film screening followed by QnA session with the director of ‘The Staging Post’, Jolyon Hoff.

The students had the opportunity to undertake two field trips. The first field visit was to Metro TV, a media television station located in West Jakarta. The tour began with an introduction and a video presentation containing a brief overview of the company, followed by a Q&A session with Metro TV Senior Anchor and Correspondent, Ms Andini Effendi. After learning about the company, students went on an exclusive tour of the production studio, control room, newsroom and the Metro TV’s office building.

For their second field trip, the students visited Kampung Akuarium (Akuarium village), which is located in the coastal area of North Jakarta. The name ‘Akuarium’ derived from land’s former use as the head office of the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI)’s for Oceanography. This field trip delivered by RUJAK Center for Urban Studies- an organisation that aims to develop the urban planning of villages and worked together with the Jakarta Government. They work on preserving the environment by offering education and skills training to the local communities. The aim of the field trip was for students to gather story ideas. Students then pitched their story ideas and wrote articles about the Akuarium and the people living there.

The students were welcomed with a brief history, and an introduction followed by a QnA session with the Kampung Akuarium representatives and the RUJAK team. The students then went on a walking tour around the Kampung and the neighbourhood to observe the everyday life in the village.

Following the two-weeks of the academic program, the students commenced their four-week professional placement (internship) at their assigned host organisations based in Jakarta. ACICIS collaborated with a wide range of media institutions and organisations. Among nine host organisations for the 2020 Journalism Professional Practicum, these organisations included Agence France-Presse, Hill & Associates, InClover Magazine, Magdalene, Metro TV, Reuters, The Jakarta Post, United Nations Information Centre and Voice of Indonesia. During their four-week placement, students gained exposure and learned from working directly with their mentors, pitched stories and gained valuable hands-on experience in their field of study. The ACICIS’ JPP Academic Program Officer, Helen Brown also provided supervision and guided the students during the program.

We would like to congratulate all 16 students on their incredible work and dedication throughout their participation in ACICIS’ Journalism Professional Practicum. We wish all students the best for the future, and we look forward to seeing them back in Indonesia soon!