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Outsource my education and future to a foreign agent (agen universitas luar negeri) — yes, no, maybe? November 13, 2012

Posted by Sharehouse Jakarta in Uncategorized.
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IDP Education is what we might call an “agen universitas luar negeri” or foreign university agent. It’s also a global education company with over 40 years of experience helping ASEAN connect with rich educational opportunities in Australia, although now IDP has entirely outgrown Oz.

Based on my chat with Ibu Isla lat year, IDP was practically started in Indonesia. The recruiter opened its doors in Jakarta in 1981 and now has 13 offices throughout the archipelago. Unlike most other agents in town, IDP is also certified by the American International Recruitment Council (AIRC), which isn’t easy.

Still, unless you’re dealing with James Bond directly, then before placing your entire future in the hands of a foreign agent, maybe it’s a good idea to find out who they’re really working for!

IDP is owned by several dozen Australian universities and SEEK Ltd, a major player in the Asia Pacific jobs market (80% owner of  Jobs.DB  website). In addition to distributing Australian edu products in key markets like India and China, they also provide language proficiency  (33% owner of IELTS), immigration (Australia visa), research, and other related education services.

The  consulting process  they follow is clearly broken down into easy steps, which is also the point of the video below — that corporate ed giants like IDP really can streamline the  applications and admissions process so it’s almost automatic (just add money ; )

No surprises there, correct? Since the IDP stakeholders collectively hold all the relevant puzzle pieces — and can influence curriculum trends in Oz, recruiting strategies, even  immigration rules. Just guessing, but they probably know more about the Indonesian education system than Indonesia.

Still, here are a couple of other things to keep in mind:

  • University agents generally represent universities, not students (depends on contract)
  • No matter how well an education consultant understand your needs and interests, you prolly understand them a bit better

The student in the video hints at what a hassle it was to make some of the initial decisions about pursuing an education overseas (before calling IDP). However, that  hassle — or struggle — is arguably part of what we refer to as “seeking an education,” at least in the Western academic tradition.

Based on experience, shopping for a degree is real learning. The motivation to shop hard is (or should be) huge.  If this is your first degree then, then — sorry– maybe this is also your introduction to the global ed biz. Hopefully we’re not as bad as bankers (all the time =)

Agen kuliah luar negeri

EXAMPLE: So Vada likes math, business and computers. She’s been told by a mentor there aren’t many “quants in skirts” out there. So she decides to study advanced IT and finance and become a “quant.”   But what’s it called? Mathematical finance? Financial engineering? Computational finance?  Well, the answer will vary from one education market and institution to another.

So that’s where the creativity comes in.  Meanwhile, comparing the time to complete the degree, cost, location, academic rigor and relative market value — that will require a bit of  analysis, right ? And analytical  thinking is a crucial S1 and s2 job search competency.

So my point is, don’t reject  “real” learning because you want to focus on  “book” learning.  Even a difficult choice like IELTS v.  TOEFL  or GMAT v. GRE might be an opportunity to become better acquainted with nuances within your own skill set and goal set.

Another detail about IDP — so far they only have a handful of clients in the US and UK, although a few months ago they inked an important deal with State University of New York (SUNY) which has over 60 campuses, including one in South Korea.

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