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State Islamic University (UIN) Lecturer in Religion and Philosophy
All MCC workers are expected to exhibit a commitment to: a personal Christian faith and discipleship; active church membership; and nonviolent peacemaking.
MCC is an equal opportunity employer, committed to employment equity. MCC values diversity and invites all qualified candidates to apply.
State Islamic University (UIN) Lecturer in Religion and Philosophy in Jogjakarta, Central Java, Indonesia
Date Opened:October 15, 2010
Start Date:Available Now
An Anabaptist professor of religious studies or related field will teach in the graduate program of the State Islamic University (UIN) Sunan Kalijaga in Jogjakarta, Indonesia. Single applicants or a couple with no children are preferred.
Mennonite Central Committee focuses on education, inter-faith bridgebuilding, and peacebuilding in Indonesia. MCC’s legal identity is through the Ministry of Higher Education and is supported by MCC’s active partnerships with Indonesian universities. This assignment with UIN allows MCC to expand its partnerships with Christian and state universities to include an Islamic university area. Interfaith connections are a priority area of interest for both MCC and many Indonesian partners.
MCC has partnered with Duta Wacana Christian University for a number of years and has recently begun a partnership with Gajah Mada University. Both universities are in Jogjakarta. Through connections with these two universities, MCC has an opportunity to build a partnership with UIN. The three universities often share teaching staff and other academic connections.
The fourteen State Institutes of Islamic Studies, including UIN, play an important role in Indonesia, now the fourth largest democracy in the world and the country with the largest Muslim population. An Impact Study, completed in March 2000, documents how the Islamic Institutes have played a major role in the development of Indonesian Islam. The State Islamic Institutes emphasize "critical thought and objective enquiry; understanding other religions; a participatory, democratic and inclusive approach to development; and respect for the humanistic, tolerant, egalitarian and open traditions of classical Islam". The IAIN approach is spread by IAIN staff and alumni at the village and national level through the extensive network of educational institutions, NGOs, national and local Islamic organizations. http://www.mcgill.ca/indonesia-project/about/background/
UIN has over 10,000 undergraduates studying in seven faculties. The masters and doctoral programs have approximately 800 students. Of the graduate students, faculty members estimate that 40% are female. Unfortunately, the religion and philosophy faculty attracts fewer women that other faculties. UIN students represent a range of Islamic groups. Many come from Muhammadiyah or Nadhatul Ulama pesantren (Islamic boarding schools). Students of the graduate programs typically go on to become university lecturers or to work for non-governmental organizations. They are often in positions of leadership. UIN leaders describe their institution as “very moderate and rational”.
MCC and UIN have a shared priority for interfaith dialogue and connections. One UIN leader said of the secondment of an expatriate Christian, “We will learn more about the Christian religion and our better understanding will enhance our own faith. Another professor said, “We put the emphasis on religious studies- religion is something to observe, discuss, and criticize. This partnership gives us the opportunity to learn about Christianity from primary sources. This is good for both sides. We believe also that an expatriate lecturer can learn something from us.”
For work-related duties the MCC worker would report to the Director of the Graduate Program. For MCC-related planning, scheduling, support, appraisals, the volunteer will report to the MCC Representatives.
Jogjakarta is the cultural heart of Java, lying between Mt. Merapi and the South Sea. Jogja is also an academic center with important universities and academies. It is a city of around 500,000 people. Jogjakarta is a crowded and busy city, but beyond the main streets are the slower, sidewalk-width streets of Javanese neighborhoods. Jogjakarta has both modern amenities and traditional values and philosophies.
The famous Borobodour temple (Buddhist) and Prambanan temple (Hindu) are located very near to Jogjakarta. Other areas of interest include the sultan’s palace and various craft industries including batik, silver, and pottery.
Good quality medical care is available in Jogjakarta. Housing would be in a comfortable cement home with tiled floor. Shopping options range from traditional markets to malls and air-conditioned grocery stores.
Jogjakarta has a small international school with elementary grades through grade eight. Other options for families would be immersion in an Indonesian language school, homeschooling, or boarding for high school students at Mountainview International Christian School in Salatiga, two hours away.
A Muria Mennonite church is located in Jogjakarta, as well as an International Congregation in Jogjakarta that worships in English on Sunday afternoons. This group includes a large number of Indonesian students wanting to improve their English. MCCers have often been involved in some way with both congregations.
At most times there will be two and sometimes three MCC households in Jogjakarta. The MCC offices and other MCC workers are located in Salatiga, two hours by road from Jogjakarta.
The language of instruction will be bahasa Indonesia. Workers will have the opportunity for 4 months of language instruction. UIN has also offered to provide translation assistance if needed in the classroom.
* Some workers in the past have found it difficult to live in the “ring of fire” in an area where we plan on disasters on a regular basis. MCCers practice earthquake drills and try to plan for contingencies.