G. Theo van Beusekom (Ir) - The milestones leading to his arrival and involvement in the founding of the FTJE

Theo received his Ingenieur (or Masters degree) in Technical Physics (Technische Natuurkunde) from the Delft University of Technology in April 1966.

Sponsorship from the Mission of Reformed Churches in the Netherlands (Zending van de Gereformeerde Kerken in Nederland)

Due to his interest in working in the developing countries (including Indonesia), one of his Professors at Delft, Prof. Dr. Ir. J. Smidt suggested that he work at Satya Wacana, who then wrote to pak Notohamidjojo himself.

The positive reply that pak Noto gave started the process for Theo to prepare for this mission by undertaking the various studies in Bahasa Indonesia, in history and culture studies leading to the Diploma A of Missionary Teacher with the Reformed Churches in the Netherlands.

The Mission policy was a term of 4 years after this initial introductory and preparation period of one year.

Arrival in Indonesia

Theo arrived in Indonesia on 11th November 1968, and in December of that year, travelled by train to Yogyakarta, where he was met by pak Subanu (Acting Rector of UKSW at the time), and Fred van Emmerik.

pak Theo van Beusekom
The arrival of Ir. G. Th. van Beusekom (or 'pak Theo' as the students fondly call him) from the Netherlands heralded a new step in the direction of the course. pak Theo was responsible for the new subjects and laboratory exercises in Electronics, so crucial in its role for the completeness of the new Electrical Engineering degree course.
Academic teaching responsibilities

In January 1969 Theo started teaching in the FIPIA Faculty, with additional responsibilities in teaching Electronics in the new FTJE Faculty.

Other early academics

Also involved in the teaching of Electronics at the time was a part time lecturer from Gajah Mada University, pak Adhi Susanto (now Prof. Dr. Adhi Susanto, MSc PhD).

Leadership in Electronics

During a meeting in 1970 with pak Notohamidjojo and representatives of the Interchurch Coordination Committee for Development Projects - ICCDP (Interkerkelijke Coordinatie Commissie voor Ontwikkelingsprojecten) Theo made the case for the urgency of a laboratory project.

As a result, Theo was heading the Committee responsible for the building of the new laboratories, with funds channeled via ICCDP (or ICCO, in Dutch). The extensive preparatory submission to this organization was completed in September 16, 1971, and the value of the project was roughly 2 Million Dutch guilders. Officially, Theo was now working as a representative of the Dutch government for another 4 years.

Funds for this project was sourced from the government of Netherlands (75%), the government of Germany (17%) with the United Board for Christian Higher Education in Asia (New York) contributing the remainder (8%)*

The building of this laboratory was indeed a milestone in the continuing development of the Fakultas Teknik Jurusan Elektro, and made the Faculty a leading Faculty of Electrical Engineering in Indonesia.

The project was considered one of the fundamental projects in ICCO's work in the 1970’s.

Theo continued to provide his considerable electronics expertise in supervising the ‘Sarjana’ stage thesis of the students going through the new curriculum. Amongst others, he supervised Kusmantoro, Stefanus Liem Hoo Shen, Matias Budhianto and Herman Kanalebe.

The only State Examination conducted for the initial student intake was held in February 1972, under the auspices of Gajah Mada University (Prof. Ir. F. Soesianto, BScE, Ph.D as the Examination Secretary on behalf of UGM).

The less than satisfactory results during the examination forced the Faculty to re-examine its curriculum, resulting in the new strengthened offering in 1974.†

The establishment of the new Laboratory described above was crucial for the effectiveness of this new curriculum.

This eventually resulted in a new 4 year degree course leading to the Engineer (Ir) degree, instead of the usual 5 years offered by State Universities at the time.

The first 'Sarjana' degree graduate was Hendrawanto, who was awarded the degree in November 1975.

*Source: Elektrika (FTJE magazine – vol 1, 1973)

† Interview with Rev. F.L.van Emmerik by George Junus Aditjondro, for ‘Tempo’ magazine (May 1973) ‘Melicinkan jalan 4 tahun’ - read Tempo Interaktif.