My name is Steven Nilam, and I come from Medan in the province of North Sumatra, Indonesia. Even though I’ve lived in Singapore for 8 years, I’ve never forgotten my...
#TSG15 – Tanoto Scholars Gathering 2015
A record 266 Tanoto scholars attended the Tanoto Scholars Gathering from 12 to 15 August 2015 in Pangkalan Kerinci. Held annually since 2010 by Tanoto Foundation, this year’s Tanoto Scholars Gathering saw scholars from 23 universities across 9 cities in Indonesia.
Learn and Lead
Themed “Learn and Lead”, the 4-day event helped forge a stronger community bond among all Tanoto scholars, centred on soft skills, learning, character building, development of leadership and teamwork, and advancing social sensitivities to the environment and community. It also included public speaking and career talks.
— Tanoto Foundation (@tanotoeducation) August 13, 2015
(above: Tanoto Scholars gathered for a career talk on Career Night.)
Events like these are not merely outreach programmes to strengthen ties within the Tanoto Scholar community, but also to nurture future leaders and decision-makers in Indonesia. The scholarships disbursed to the students are based on merit and academic excellence. Through various initiatives and programmes, Tanoto Foundation also seeks to imbue in its scholars the necessary character and leadership qualities that will make them engaged contributors to the country. Tanoto Foundation was founded in 2001 by RGE Chairman Sukanto Tanoto and his wife Tinah Bingei Tanoto. The establishing of Tanoto Foundation was the culmination of two decades of philanthropic work by Sukanto Tanoto who, having dropped out of school at 17, continually feels that education (together with empowerment and enhancement) remains one of the key drivers of poverty alleviation and social mobility.
Tanoto Foundation has been recognised as a staunch advocate of education and lifelong learning. In Indonesia, it has a multi-prong approach to the betterment of education standards, with a series of schemes, programmes and scholarships benefitting 4,400 teachers, 38,000 students and 5,400 scholarship recipients, also known as Tanoto scholars. With Indonesia’s 70th year of Independence only a couple days following the conclusion of the Tanoto Scholars Gathering, Mr Anderson Tanoto noted that while the country has achieved a lot as a nation, there was still room for improvement. Holistic and continuous learning would lay the foundations for the country to achieve more.
(above: Anderson plants a Pulai tree in a school)
Tenacity to overcome challenges
The Tanoto Scholars Gathering was graced by Tanoto Foundation co-founders Mr Sukanto Tanoto and Mrs Tinah Bingei Tanoto, and Board of Trustees member Anderson Tanoto. Mr Anderson Tanoto, an RGE director, shared with the Tanoto Scholars the qualities Sukanto Tanoto possessed that Tanoto Foundation wishes to imbue in its community – the tenacity and grit to overcome challenges; and the humility to continue learning. Mr Sukanto Tanoto also shared some advice at the event:
To progress, one can learn from various sources, not just restricted to school teachings. When we make a mistake, we can use it as a learning opportunity too. Whereas to be a good leader, we must start to lead or to lead oneself, to adapt into the surrounding environment, and eventually learn how to become a leader of this nation. And it is also important to have social sensitivity to the environment and community around us and offer the necessary help when required. These are key attitudes that propel Tanoto Scholars to be future leaders of Indonesia.
Tanoto Foundation on YouTube
Followed Tanoto Foundation on YouTube yet? Watch some highlights of the Tanoto Scholars Gathering in the video below: