Pursuing a Master's Degree Program Through a Civil Servant Scholarship

March 1, 2019, i have been appointed as a civil servant candidate (CPNS) in Daerah Istimewa Yogyakarta (DIY) province, assigned to work as a vocational teacher at Seyegan Vocational High School. I admit that this achievement is not well planned, as I thoroughly enjoyed working as a software engineer. In 2018, my second year at an international startup, I briefly wrote about it in this post. In the same post, I mentioned a plan to pursue a master degree but at that time i had no exact plan. However, the transition to becoming a civil servant has made the idea of continuing my studies unthinkable.

Long-short story, 2021 was my second year as a civil servant. I had finished the mandatory program likes “Latihan Dasar (Latsar) CPNS” and “Program Induksi Guru”. Simultaneously, the persistent challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic continued, requiring the ongoing implementation of online learning. Amid these situations, I found myself with more time for contemplation, particularly regarding the pursuit of a master degree with a scholarship. LPDP and Beasiswa Unggulan emerged as the most viable scholarship options in my consideration. But everything changed when I came across scholarship information from “Badan Kepegawaian Daerah (BKD) DIY”.

Scholarship Information

The DIY province established a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Gadjah Mada University regarding a scholarship program for civil servants. To implement this MoU, DIY province issued an announcement in 2020 for a scholarship program to pursue doctorate and master’s degree programs for civil servants, as outlined in “Surat Edaran Gubernur DIY Nomor 8924708.” The program included two positions for a doctorate degree in one major and 24 positions for a master’s degree in nine majors. During that period, I was unable to apply for the scholarship due to two requirements: 1) there was no major available in informatics engineering, 2) as of March 2020, I had just been inaugurated as a civil servant, indicating no prior years of experience. But due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, DIY province issued another announcement, “Surat Edaran Gubernur DIY Nomor 8927179,” postponing the scholarship program.

Surprisingly, on March 31, 2021, the DIY province issued an announcement to resume the scholarship program for civil servants, as indicated in “Surat Edaran Gubernur DIY Nomor 89201967. How lucky am i that DIY has decided to continue the scholarship program and they add information technology major with 15 positions. As of March 2021, I have already accrued one year of experience as a civil servant, allowing me to fulfill the requirements for the application.

Selection Process

The selection process involves three stages: 1) administrative selection by BKD DIY, 2) PAPs and AcEPT tests by Gadjah Mada University, 3) academic selection by Gadjah Mada University. Administrative selection required several documents and i think it’s relatively easy. On June 1, 2021, BKD DIY announced the results of the administrative selection, which can be viewed in this document. There is something weird that information technology major with 15 positions only have 9 applicants who successfully passed the administrative tes. At that time, I assumed that all applicants for the information technology major would be accepted since there were fewer applicants than positions. But this assumption was wrong wkwk please continue reading to know the reason :p

The PAPs and AcEPT tests, organized by Gadjah Mada University, were conducted online. PAPs is an academic test comprising verbal, quantitative, and reasoning subtests. AcEPT, on the other hand, stands for Academic English Proficiency Test, encompassing listening, vocabulary, grammar and structure, reading, and composing skills. Both tests have a passing grade score of 450 for PAPs and 149 for AcEPT (master’s degree). Alhamdulillah, I successfully met the passing grade scores. The score announcement from BKD DIY can be found here. One information technology major applicant did not meet the passing score.

The last test was the academic test by Gadjah Mada University. This test specifically conducted by “Departemen Teknik Elektro dan Teknologi Informasi (DTETI)”. Due to the covid-19 pandemic, the academic test was conducted online. Scholarship applicants from Yogyakarta province had to fill out a self-assessment form containing 63 questions. I’m sorry; I can’t share the details because the form is confidential.

After completing the three tests mentioned above, on July 28, 2021, BKD DIY shared the final announcement regarding the applicants who passed the selection.

#FunFacts: I am the youngest scholarship awardee

Ah, I almost forgot something—haha! All the costs associated with participating in the three tests mentioned above are covered by BKD DIY.

  1. PAPs Test: Rp. 250.000,00
  2. AcEPT Test: Rp. 300.000,00
  3. Academic Test: Rp. 500.000,00
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