In some universities in some parts of Indonesia, the students are usually categorized as either “Turtle Students”, translated from the word kura-kura meaning ‘turtle’, which is a play on the Indonesian kuliah rapat – kuliah rapat, meaning ‘from classes to meetings’, who like to be active at university not only within the academic arena (i.e. classes) but also outside of it (i.e. at meetings with student organizations or at sports competitions) or “Butterfly Students”, translated from the word kupu-kupu meaning ‘butterfly’ which is a play on kuliah pulang – kuliah pulang, meaning ‘from classes to home’, who choose to focus on studying alone – not extra-curricular activities – and returning home.
At a glance, people might think of me as one of the “butterfly students” since I mostly go to campus and then back home after that. It seems that I rarely socialize in campus. However, not all people know that I actually like to help my lecturer for research, especially regarding Economics. He does a lot of research so he often goes to other cities for seminars and presentations. Sometimes, I wonder how to be like him in the future. The good thing is that I often attend seminars, until one day , I heard that there would be one seminar that was going to be held in Padang (West Sumatera).
Well, to go that far, airplane tickets are surely needed, right? To solve that, I actually planned to do a small research, arranged a paper with an edited version of my last year’s essay, and then added some provisions so that it could be submitted to the conference committee. Whether it would win or not, there is nothing to lose. Especially since it was my first paper anyway and my way of practicing.
The research purpose itself was to analyze the efficiency of Islamic pawnshop along with some banks as its competitors and analyze the impact and prospects for asset growth of Islamic pawnshop in Indonesia. I wanted to know which institution had the most efficient operational of gold pawn, and also how much the growth of asset related to gold pawn for the next few years. The title of the paper itself was “Efficiency Analysis of Islamic Pawnshop and The Effect and Growth Prospects of Its Assets in Indonesia”. This research was a quantitative research analyzing secondary data of annual financial statements of the Islamic Pawnshop and its 4 competitors from 2008 – 2014. So many input variables were needed, including general expenses, administrative expenses, salaries, and other expenses, as well as the output variables, namely margin income, loans, and other service revenues.
The results of the research showed that the efficiency of the Islamic pawnshops reached a value of 100 percent in 2008-2014 compared to the competitors that only got 97.42 percent. The input and output variables significantly influenced the Islamic Pawnshop assets. Additionally, the prospects of Islamic pawnshop an asset in 2025 is optimistically will be able to reach IDR 116 trillion in the presence of inorganic growth actions.
The following week , the committee called me and they told me that after several stages of selection process from the reviewer, my paper passed as one of the six accepted papers under the young category and got the chance to present the paper at the Economic Research and Islamic Finance Forum (FREKS XIV) 2016 organized by Financial Services Authority (OJK) and The Indonesian Association of Islamic Economist (IAEI) and it will be held in IAIN Imam Bonjol, Padang. I was surprised and grateful at the same time, but I also felt nervous because it was my first experience and my first chance to stand up and speak in front of many specialists of economics.
The long awaited days were getting closer. Before the departure, my parents, my friends and the Dean of my faculty also gave their support to me, the only finalist from State Islamic University Jakarta. At The Soekarno Hatta Airport, I met the other finalists from Muhammadiyah University Yogyakarta, STEI Tazkia, University of Indonesia, and other participants from some universities in Indonesia. Finally, my other wish to go to Padang for free was finally achieved. Apart for the free airplane tickets, we also got to stay in a hotel for free for a few days. In addition to that, all finalists of the Young category and Senior category were invited to dinner by The Governor of West Sumatera.
The conference was so interesting . I met a lot of amazing people there. One of the jurors was Dr. Marissa Haque, a famous female artist that is also an Islamic Economics lecturer. When the result was announced , my name was not there. I didn’t win or maybe I should say it’s not my time to win yet. Disappointed? Yes. Feeling sad? Yes, of course. However, I was so grateful for the whole experiences and also appreciate all my rivals. I just need more practice and as a youth, there are no words like “give up” in my dictionary.
Hopefully with more practice and more study, I can join the event again next year. It turns out that the same conference is going to be held this year, just in different place. I was even given the chance from the committee to choose whether to become a participant or be a part of the committee. So, I chose to be a part of the committee because to be in it will be a new experience for me. I mean as a youth, we just have to take the first step to increase our experience and develop ourselves in many ways possible!
About the Author:
My name is Dita Nur Amanda. I am a student of State Islamic University Syarif Hidayatullah Jakarta. Currently, I like to attend academic seminars and also help my lecturer for economic research.