The German Academic Exchange Service – Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst (DAAD) is a joint organization of German institutions of higher education. It aims to promote academic cooperation world-wide, especially through the exchange of students, scholars, academics, and scientists. Prof. Dr. Achmad Nurmandi, M.Sc., who is now Vice Rector for Cooperation and International Affairs of Universitas Muhammadiyah Yogyakarta (UMY), is an alumnus of a DAAD program, namely the DIES International Deans’ Course Southeast Asia.

Participated in the program in 2010 as Dean of Faculty of Social and Political Science of UMY, Nurmandi told that he had a one-week workshop in Berlin, Germany. He admitted that he gained a lot of new knowledge valuable for him as a dean.

Nurmandi mentioned that the program focused on a strategic faculty management, financial management, research management, and human resource management. Being a dean, he perceived that the managerial issues were essential to comprehend and implement as an effort to get acknowledged by countries in the world, particularly in Southeast Asia.

“One of the merits to be a part of the DIES International Deans’ Course was that I had an occasion to share experiences and knowledge of good university governance with university leaders across ASEAN regions. We also talked about our difficulties in strategic, financial, research, and human resource management,” explained Nurmandi.

Besides, Nurmandi stated that, due to the program, he obtained a concept of how to manage international programs at the Faculty of Political and Social Science of UMY. “I sought to apply the notion to the international program at my faculty. From the International Deans’ Course, I recognized that international programs possess indicators such as student activities, joint research, and a student exchange,” he said.

Nurmandi also asserted that he has implemented knowledge he got from the program since he was assigned as Vice Rector for Cooperation and International Affairs of UMY in 2017. Indeed, one of UMY’s goals is to be an international reputable university in 2020 so that in the next 25 year or in 2042 UMY can become a world-class university.

“Some indicators to achieve the target as an international reputable university are based on publications, citations, the number of doctors and professors, the number of international students, and international journal publications. In 2018, UMY could publish 104 Scopus-indexed documents. The number rose from the previous years, 45 in 2017 and 20 in 2016,” detailed Nurmandi.

To conclude, UMY is at the right track to attain its goal to be an international reputable university. Prof. Nurmandi expected that an international atmosphere which has been created at UMY will always exist and UMY can be developed nationally and internationally. In addition, deans or other higher official positions at UMY can join the DAAD program to know good university management.