The inspiring two-day conference

By Dr. Djuwari Sarkawi
August 5, 2020


Organizations that focus on the value of inclusion and invisible diversity, in addition to traditional diversity, typically have superior performance as compared with those that do not (Michel Cournoyer, 2017).

It was on August 1 and finished on August 2, 2020, the international conference held by an inclusive society.  By being inclusive, it means that the members are not only researchers such as faculties and academicians. It can also include administrators. It can also embrace all teachers not only from colleges but may also be from any schools. I hope my guess is correct.
ISTAR (International Society of Teachers, Administrators, and Researchers) is inclusive It was founded by Dr. Rommel V. Tabula. As the founder and President as well, he has held some international conferences. I was invited as a keynote speaker during a two-day conference: hosted in Bangkok Thailand. The theme chosen was Language Education and Research in the New Normal: Perspectives and Directions.
The theme above is relevant to the phenomenon today: Covid 19 outbreak. People around the world are affected by this pandemic. We have been about six months keeping ourselves at home and social distancing. Due to this Covid 19 outbreak, we might be bored. But, as administrators, teachers, and researchers, we should not be dragged into a boring condition.
ISTAR—the scientific society—provides us with activities. We can join the conferences they hold. We can be the participants. We can be also involved in the speakership. The most interesting one that I had got involved for two days was my opportunity. I was invited by the ISTAR President as the keynote speaker on the second day, August 2.
The theme was really enticing. And, my topic was related to my field that I have been engrossed with. I talked about ESP Approach for Multidiscipline in the Global Era. ESP stands for English for Specific Purposes. This approach is the way how to teach English directed to the purpose the students want to learn.
There were more topics discussed. That is why; it was participated by the diversity of participants. But, the topic was still related to language education and research. The discussion was also directed to the issues in the global era. We have known that English is an international language.
For the Philippines, people are lucky because English is also spoken in this country. Like the Philippines, Malaysia and Singapore are also lucky. Their people also speak English. But for Indonesia, and also Thailand, English is a foreign language. We have to learn formally not naturally. Formal means we have to study in schools. Informal means we have to acquire that language naturally.
But the most impressive during the conference was the inclusiveness. ISTAR with the members involved in it is an inclusive society. It can involve all the related administrators, teachers, and researchers. They are included in the scientific society because their works are related to it.
So, cultures are blended. No “color” of the individuals is dominated. But, all are one. They have the same vision and mission to get in touch with ISTAR for getting inspiration. That is the organization that is inclusive. Vision and mission can be depicted in the theme. And the participants are engaged and inspired. It was really inspiring.
Dr. Djuwari is an Associate Professor and the Director of Language Laboratory at STIE Perbanas Surabaya, the editor of some research journals in the Philippines and Indonesia. He is also a journalist in some newspapers in Indonesia; the President of International Association of Scholarly Publishers, Editors, and Reviewers (IASPER).



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