Updated: May 8
Writer: Eveline Stella Budiman | Photographer: Dimitri Haikal
What is APUINA?
Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University is a place that is considered as a second home by its student body. Students are given the chance to interact with a plethora of people coming from cultural backgrounds. In a place where everything is so diverse, we tend to take refuge in things and people that are familiar to us - and that is where APUINA comes in.
As of 14th of December 2019, Sinta Shamira Apsari and Muhammad Syailendra Khalifa were chosen as the leader and vice leader alongside with 57 new members of APUINA for the term 2019 to 2020. We got the opportunity to interview both Shamira and Andra regarding the new faces of APU INA and the things to look forward to in the upcoming year.
What were the things you had to prepare before your APUINA presentation? Can you share your experience? How did you decide for the members of each division in APUINA?
“Frankly, being the president of APUINA is a dream when my friends started to discuss who will be the next president of APUINA. In the beginning, I felt unqualified, yet I convinced myself to become the candidate for the presidency. Even though I did not have much time to prepare, I was really helped by my friends who at that time shard their aspiration of what they would like APUINA to be. Those aspirations led me to be at this point; being the leader of APUINA 2019/2020. With only the experience of being the leader of Daily Events for Indonesian Week 2019, it felt like a dream came true when I was elected. From which I can learn, hard works do not lie, there is no limitation to create. Indeed, being the committee of APUINA is not a must, which is why when it comes to choosing a cabinet, I carefully selected people who take interests and have the same vision that I shared. Alhamdulillah, now I am surrounded by these spectaculars committee.”
What are the innovations or improvements to APUINA that we all have to look forward to?
“In cabinet 2019/2020, only a few changes have been made from the internal structure. If in the previous cabinet it is called Art and Culture division, in our cabinet we added Crafts into the name. In hopes that it will become a platform for members of APUINA, not only in music and dances, but also in cooking, sewing, and other forms of art. One of the biggest innovations that insyaAllah will be applied is emphasizing the outsourcing system on every division. With this, we hope to not only create a platform but also strengthen the bond among the community members whether they are members of the division or not.”
How do you define APUINA? How do you think will APUINA be an aid to the Indonesian students studying here in APU?
“APUINA for me is my second home, a home for us Indonesian students in APU, Japan. Living abroad can be a hard thing, which is why APUINA has the roles to keep the bond between Indonesian students with various activities throughout the year and make them feels like at home. It is important for us Indonesian students to feel proud as we can express ourselves freely but still keep Indonesia’s values outside our country.”
Please tell us your hopes and expectations towards this year’s APUINA?
“In our cabinet, we are hoping to bring some changes internally and communally. Meaning, we want to establish a community where all of the members of APUINA can benefit from all of the perks offered by APUINA without having to officially be a part of the cabinet. We would like to invite all of the members to take part and contribute to create inclusivity in our community. We also expect that this year's cabinet can serve the duty to make our country proud.”
To conclude, we hope this year's cabinet of APUINA can serve a better purpose in creating a home-like community for Indonesia students who are studying in APU.