Proud! This Indonesian Student Becomes President of BEM Columbia University

The name of Indonesia was again made proud by the brilliant achievements of its young people. This time it came from a young man from Ciamis who studied at Columbia University, United States of America.

This young man named Deris Nagara became the first Indonesian student to hold the position of President of the Student Executive Board (BEM) of Columbia University. Deris served as President of BEM, one of the best campuses in the world, in 2023-2024.

The 25-year-old young man is also a student receiving the 2022 LPDP scholarship from the Indonesian Ministry of Finance. He is grateful for his achievements now which are part of serving the state.

Deris Nagara himself at Columbia University studied Master of Public Administration. Before entering Columbia University, Deris attended Patterson River Secondary College, Australia.

Deris’ journey to get to this point was not easy. During the SNMPTN selection in Indonesia, Deris failed to enter a public university.

He originally wanted to enter the Faculty of Medicine, then changed his mind and chose to study at the Department of International Relations at President University with a full scholarship. During college, he did not want to burden his parents with fees.

Moreover, the condition at that time, the father had just retired and the mother only had a shop business. Deris also has to earn additional daily expenses to make money by working part time as an MC to an insurance agent.

When he did the exchange program to the Netherlands, he was still working while studying. He goes to work every day, which is 50 km from Hogeschool van Arnhem en Nijmegen, by bicycle.

Apart from being active on the academic side and working while studying. Deris is also active in non-academic activities as well as social activities.

Since 2013, he has actively participated in volunteer activities in the fields of tourism, education, and MSMEs in the area. Deris Nagara dreams of educating the younger generation and improving the quality of life of the people by becoming the nation’s leader one day.