ITS collaborates with Unpatti to develop maritime transportation engineering

Chairman of the Transla Department ITS Ir. Tri Ahmadi (third from left) and Unpatti Chancellor Prof. Dr. MJ Saptenno (fourth from right) after the development of the Department of Sea Transportation Engineering (Transla) forum discussion. (photo: IO/ITS)

IO, Surabaya – The success of Novem­ber 10 Surabaya Institute of Technolo­gy (ITS) in developing its Marine Trans­portation Engineering Department (Transla) has grabbed the attention of other universities. One of those is Pattimura (Unpatti) in Ambon, Malu­ku, which plans on opening a similar department, working together with ITS. The plan was stated by the Unpatti Rector himself, Prof. Dr. MJ Saptenno SH. M.Hum. along with his staff in a visit to the ITS campus in the ITS Rec­torate building.

The collaboration is a follow-up to the signing of a Memorandum of Un­derstanding (MoU) by the rector of ITS, Hasanuddin University (Unhas), Makassar and Unpatti on November 2017. The MoU was created specif­ically for the development of higher education in marine transportation. Saptenno states that after being sep­arated from North Maluku province, Maluku Province itself still had 1,340 islands in its region. In order to main­tain everything pertaining to resources in the islands, they would need reliable maritime transportation.

“This is the basis of our (Unpat­ti) decision to create a Department of Maritime Transportation Engineering,” he explained. He said that the mari­time transportation problems in Malu­ku had long been unresolved as a re­sult of there not being one organization that researched the problem well.

“Because of that, we hope this collaboration with ITS will help solve those problems,” he said.

So far, said Saptenno, Maluku Province only relies on motorboats from small businesses, traditional fishing boats, and even sailboats as a means of transportation. These means of transportation are holding back the acceleration of infrastructure develop­ment in the province.

“There are in fact many natural resources in the Maluku province is­lands, but they (Maluku people) do not know how to market them, as the maritime transport and infrastructure aren’t adequate,” he continued.

As an example, he talked about the fish caught in the Aru Islands, and how there was no concept of how to monetize them in order to increase the region’s prosperity. Also, how there was a large potential for tourism in the small Maluku islands but there have been no studies on how to create a tourist destination that can attract domestic and international visitors. Another area in need of development and study was forestry.

“As a result, we need to work to­gether with ITS so that we can collab­orate in various ways in the future so that the potential may be used fully, but our approach must be scientific,’ he asserted. Meanwhile, ITS Maritime Transportation Engineering Depart­ment Head Ir Tri Ahmadi Ph.D. stated that the collaboration was an honor for the department, as they have been entrusted to help Unpatti create their new department.

“We are very happy to be able to help our brothers and sisters in a region surrounded by water to help accelerate their infrastructure devel­opment, by connectivity and mobility for the prosperity of the people of the region,” concluded Tri.

Discussing the details of the collab­oration, Tri said that ITS would help create a curriculum and ITS teaching staff could teach together with the lecturers at Unpatti. ITS’s laboratory would also be available for use by Un­patti students. ITS students will also conduct a field study in Maluku.

“As a result of the numerous prob­lems specific to Maluku, which are not present in East Java, the experience will be very valuable for ITS students,” he explained.

Tri also explained that in Indonesia there are eight provinces whose territo­ry is mostly water and islands. Among them are the Riau Islands, Maluku, North Maluku, West Nusa Tenggara, East Nusa Tenggara, Bangka Be­litung, North Sulawesi, and Southeast Sulawesi.

“In order to develop those provinc­es, there needs to be reliable maritime transportation,” he said.

The ITS Maritime Transportation Engineering Department was chosen as the first and only department in In­donesia to take on the responsibility of helping the eight provinces develop maritime transportation infrastruc­ture, in line with their development aims. “Thus, in the future they will be able to develop their own regions,” he concluded.

The plan, in line with direction directly from the Republic of Indo­nesia’s Ministry of Transportation (Kemenhub RI), is for Unpatti’s new department to be officially opened in the next semester in September. As of now, at least 20 students are ready to undergo studies at the new depart­ment. (ITS)