Creating a New Narrative of Student Affairs in Higher Education
When we started planning for the International Conference on Student Development in Higher Education (ICSDHE 2021), we had a clear intention that, through this event, we would like to forward a new narrative as to how students’ development in
higher education be seen. Based on the observation, when universities plan changes and transformation, the student affairs do not get the attention and emphasis they deserve. The role of Student Affairs is understood in a narrow context concentrating on organizing and managing student activities including controlling the financial aspects and program approval. This situation raises questions to the need to rebrand and give a new perspective or narrative to Student Affairs.
Students are the hope of the future. Students Development is not only about engaging the students but what is more important empowering them. Student development must provide support to unleash and unlock the potential of our students. In preparing our talents to become excellent and balanced person, students must start with activism. Activism is very significant. The study shows that majority of students activist expected to continue their activism beyond university and incorporate it into their careers.
Student activism must be holistic covering the intellectual, educational, and social functions of the students in Higher Education. The scope of students’ activism must be wide and diverse enough not only focus on certain areas such as intellectual or welfare but must be balanced with the educational and social responsibilities toward communities. The fundamental purpose of higher education is to educate the students towards serving the societies in pursuit of the knowledge. The university must be close to the community and students must be involved with community development activities and programs. Student development that only revolves around campus activities without involving the outside community will not be able to produce virtuous people with knowledge and wisdom.