President Tsai’s Opening Remarks for Indonesia Online Education Fair

Ladies and gentlemen, good morning! (Selamat pagi! )

On behalf of Asia University, I would like to extend my warmest welcome to all of you in Surabaya, Jakarta, and other places of Indonesia, to attend this on-line educational fair, which is the first one ever held in Taiwan.  Over the past years, we used to hold Taiwan Education Fair in Indonesia, working together with some renowned Indonesian universities, such as UNAIR , UNDIP and UMY, but the outbreak of Covid-19 now has made it impossible for us to gather together and to have face-to-face communication.  These days, to protect ourselves from the attack of the virus, quarantine, isolation, and social distancing have become a daily practice in this global village. Regardless of class, gender, and nation, we are all greatly affected by this disease. Cities are locked down, employees forced to work at home, and traveling across borders forbidden, what’s worse, schools of all levels are almost closed around the globe. We are all in the same boat, experiencing the same crisis.

Luckily (and God blessed), Taiwan government is able to take proactive precaution measures to ward off the attack of Covid-19 in its emerging stage, thereby successfully keeping the confirmed infectious cases to a surprising low number of 443, and only 7 persons died of this disease. People in Taiwan are basically able to lead a normal life, and most importantly, schools remain open and study continues, though we have to wear masks and wash hands as instructed.  As Covid-19 poses an unprecedented challenge to everyone globally, Taiwan, known for its success in stopping the outbreak of the virus, is gaining its fame as one of the safest places to stay while facing this deadly disease. We are proud of what the government has achieved. As the president of Asia University, I am also proud to say that Asia University is faring very well in this crisis. None of our students and colleagues are directly affected by this virus as we follow strict instructions to stop the virus happening on campus. Campus life is safe; teaching, learning and research are effectively and efficiently carried out as scheduled.

Indonesia is an important partner to Taiwan in many fields, including the academic cooperation in the higher education.  Today, there are 13,907 Indonesian students studying in Taiwan. They study at different universities around the island and become part of us. Taiwan provides quality teaching and research environment for international students. Taiwan is also a Muslim friendly country which many international students have prioritized it as an ideal place for studying abroad. There is a strong academic tie between Indonesia and Taiwan. The number of Indonesian students in Taiwan is increasing greatly every year because more and more Indonesian students have great education experience in Taiwan.

Today, the outbreak of Covid-19 prevents us from visiting Indonesia in person; however, we still manage to hold this on-line educational fair. Thanks to the modern technology, we are able to meet each other in the air. This also proves that Taiwan can react to any challenges with innovation and flexibility.  I deeply believe that in this on-line fair we can still communicate virtually and effectively as usual.

As a host to this on-line educational fair, I would like to express my sincere gratitude to the Ministry of Education, Taiwan, for its strong support for the Indonesian Taiwan Education Center in Surabaya.  For this special occasion, I am pleased to announce that Mr. Andy Cheu-An Bi (畢祖安), Director General, Department of International and Cross-strait Education from Ministry of Education, and Miss Grace Ou (歐淑慧), Director of Education, TETO Jakarta, will also join us later and will deliver some important message to the prospective students, regarding the government’s New South Bound Policy and Taiwan Scholarship opportunities.  What’s more, today we have 27 Taiwan universities, both private and public, attending this fair. They will take turns to introduce their universities to you. It is a rare chance to get to know so many good Taiwan universities at one time. Their willingness to join us, I truly believe, will help make this on-line education fair a memorable event for you.

Any good presentation cannot be complete without the audience’s warm participation. You are most welcome to ask questions or to start a dialogue with any representatives from each university, and I think they are all prepared to answer your questions and inquiries on the site. Last but not least, I wish each of you can find your favorite university, and make your dream of studying in Taiwan become a reality . I am looking forward to seeing you all in Taiwan soon.

Thank you.