Excellent human resources are key, and they are what we must prepare concretely
Surabaya, East Java (ANTARA) - President Joko Widodo urged universities to prepare excellent human resources (HR) to welcome Indonesia's demographic dividend in the next decade.

"Excellent human resources are key, and they are what we must prepare concretely," he stated while opening the Campus Convention XXIX and Yearly Gathering XXV of the Indonesian Rectors Forum at Surabaya State University here on Monday.

Widodo noted that abundant natural resources are not sufficient to make Indonesia a developed country while saying that having quality HR is the most important factor in achieving the goal.

"Second, we need science and technology and quality innovations. The two are the important tasks of our educational institutions; the tasks of our rectors and lecturers," he remarked.

He recalled that during his visit to two universities in Washington D.C. and San Francisco as part of his trip to the US, he was astonished to find that more than half of the students in those two universities came from China.

"I then thought this is what caused China to leap forward in the last 20 years and surpass developed countries. Second is India. I looked for students from Indonesia, (and) it turned out that there were five (students), (the number is) very small," he remarked.

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Meanwhile, during his visit to Vietnam, Widodo received information that a private company has 2,400 researchers for its research and development (R&D).

He assessed that this reflected the extent to which Vietnam values research.

He underlined that higher education institutions have a strategic role to create excellent and quality HR and not only those that master sciences but also ones with a relentless zest for learning.

Moreover, there is a pressing need for HR that are physically, mentally, and morally strong.

"(We need) human resources that are innovative and produce quality work. Universities are tasked with being research institutions because they have many lecturers, research staff, and tens of thousands of students for the development of science and technology," he remarked.

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Translator: Willi Irawan, Raka Adji
Editor: Jafar M Sidik
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