Skip to comments.Indonesians to Receive Master's Degrees Courtesy U.S. Taxpayers
Posted on 02/27/2012 6:44:15 PM PST by Steve Peacock
A program providing training and scholarships to Indonesian professionals is about to be expanded by the Obama Administration, which hopes to increase the number of Indonesian future leaders holding advanced degrees (Masters) from U.S. and in-country institutions of higher education.
According to a Statement of Work (SOW) posted today to the FedBizOpps database, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) is seeking contractors capable of carrying out Phase II of the Program to Extend Scholarships and Training to Achieve Sustainable Impacts," or PRESTASI. (Solicitation #SOL-497-12-000004).
The selected vendor will continue to assist existing Phase I participants while identifying and placing new candidates for the extended programwhich will cost an additional $16-$20 million.
It should be noted that this project represents but a fraction of overall U.S. assistance to Indonesia; on the other hand, this ongoing endeavor remains indicative of the massive investments of U.S. taxpayer funds into the education of Indonesia citizens that began under Bush and has continued with the current White House.
As U.S. Trade & Aid Monitor reported nearly a year ago, the current administration agreed to pour an additional $90 million into public as well as Islamic schools via a project known as Prioritizing Reform, Innovation and Opportunities for Reaching Indonesias Teachers, Administrators, and Students, or PRIORITAS (Monitor, May 31, 2011). This followed an educational assistance program valued at about $167 million under Bush.
Similarly, PRESTASI is separate from yet another USAID/Indonesia unveiled just last month. In that instance, USAID's Higher Education Leadership and Management (HELM) program devoted yet another $20 million over the next five years "to support Indonesias efforts to develop world-class higher education institutions and prepare students to be successful leaders."
Percentage-wise, specific expenditures for PRESTASI Phase II will be broken down in the following manner, the document says:
Monitoring and Placement of Current Students in Program: 22%
Long Term Advanced Graduate degrees in the US: 68%
Short-term non-degree training opportunities: 10%
While the overarching goal of PRESTASI Phase II program is to develop individuals and entities that are better equipped to provide leadership in the public and private sector," USAID wishes to equip those people and organizations so that they may return to their country to:
a. implement and support policies important to Indonesias development;
b. exercise equity, accountability and transparency in managing public and private sector resources;
c. provide better delivery of public services;
d. participate more effectively in and contribute more broadly to the countrys economic and social development.
It remains unclear how much USAID initially spent during Phase I; although a USAID FY 2011 Service Contracts spreadsheet lists a subobligated amount of $2.2 million for PRESTASI, a search of FedBizOpps produced zero results for the program, aside from Phase II SOW released and located today.
Car plants in Finland, solar panel makers in China, Master’s degrees in China.....
Hey how about affordable FOOD...?
For a second, I honestly thought this was a spoof from The Onion.
insanity, with our financial woes at present (or anytime, for that matter). type state department puke
Yo! Paying back to the home country! It’s all good. We got the Benjamins.
Prudential has been doing some work in Indonesia already...........
Prestasi appears to mean ‘performance’
Indonesia 86% Mohammedans....
This pisses me off to no end. Thank goodness my Congressman is Republican so when I call and vent I’m heard. Come on November.
will someone please STOP all this....
Mine is a Republican, too, but I’m not as hopeful — Chris Smith (NJ), who also happens to be chairman of the House Foreign Affairs subcommittee on Africa (and often gives his blessing to many nutty foreign aid programs), has been silent the past couple of times I’ve reached out to him. Not even a “thanks, dear constituent” form letter in response to my questions and complaints, particularly about USAID. On the other hand, perhaps this should signal me to step up efforts, not to take a defeatist attitude.
Additionally, here’s an ironic twist: after going $70,000 in debt to become a teacher and remaining short of a master’s degree, I once again face unemployment in a month (the temp maternity leave position I’ve filled for six months is about to be filled by someone apparently with better connections than I have). So, no work, no money to pay my student loans, and what few federal taxes I’ll be paying I shall continue to help the Indonesians get through grad school! Sick!
One more thought on that note: as I am facing unemployment at this (unnamed)high school, I think I’ll go out with a bang and not a whimper — my students, who are furious about this program as well, have no clue how they will pay for college. Here’s a chance to legitimately encourage some civil action by the younger generation. Seriously. I think I’ll be creating a formal letter-writing lesson into plans into the next couple of weeks, with a little local media publicity (maybe) to boot.
Thanks, combat_boots, for adding those excellent resources. I’m happy to contribute my tax dollars to the Indonesians, to U.S. universities who get paid by the federal government, and — now I realize — to corporate behemoths such as Prudential who likely get tax write-offs for their involvement in such programs!
To those who have a Twitter account, please consider posting the following to send a message to the House Foreign Affairs Committee about this program, Just copy and paste and it will fit (so long as you make ‘gradschool’ one word it will fit the Twitter maximum letter count:
How can Congress justify sending Indonesians to gradschool when U.S. citizens struggle to go themselves? http://bit.ly/w0fkE3 @ForeignAffGOP
Why not teach your kids activism. I’m in Wisconsin, teachers have been doing plenty of it, and this is a real bread and butter future issue.
Good luck with your position, its such a tough time. I’m kind of an expert in ‘LinkedIn’ job seeking so if you want some pointers let me know via personal message.