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Pidato Wisudawan Terbaik, Memukau tetapi Sekaligus Posted on 7 April 2013 by rinaldimunir

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Setiap acara wisuda di kampus ITB selalu ada pidato sambutan dari salah seorang wisudawan. Biasanya yang terpilih memberikan pidato sambutan adalah pribadi yang unik, tetapi tidak selalu yang mempunyai IPK terbaik. Sepanjang yang saya perna h ikuti, isi pidatonya kebanyakan tidak terlalu istimewa, paling-paling isinya k enangan memorabilia selama menimba ilmu di kampus ITB, kehidupan mahasiswa selam a kuliah, pesan-pesan, dan ucapan terima kasih kepada dosen dan teman-teman civi tas academica. Namun, yang saya tulis dalam posting-an ini bukan pidato wisudawan ITB, tetapi w isudawan di Amerika. Beberapa hari yang lalu saya menerima kiriman surel dari te man di milis dosen yang isinya cuplikan pidato Erica Goldson pada acara wisuda d i Coxsackie-Athens High School, New York, tahun 2010. Erica Goldson adalah wisud awan yang lulus dengan nilai terbaik pada tahun itu. Isi pidatonya sangat menari k dan menurut saya sangat memukau. Namun, setelah saya membacanya, ada rasa kepr ihatinan yang muncul (nanti saya jelaskan).Cuplikan pidato ini dikutip dari tuli san di blog berikut: http://pohonbodhi.blogspot.com/2010/09/you-are-either-withme-or-against-me.html Saya lulus. Seharusnya saya menganggapnya sebagai sebuah pengalaman yang menyenan gkan, terutama karena saya adalah lulusan terbaik di kelas saya. Namun, setelah direnungkan, saya tidak bisa mengatakan kalau saya memang lebih pintar dibanding kan dengan teman-teman saya. Yang bisa saya katakan adalah kalau saya memang ada lah yang terbaik dalam melakukan apa yang diperintahkan kepada saya dan juga dal am hal mengikuti sistem yang ada. Di sini saya berdiri, dan seharusnya bangga bahwa saya telah selesai mengikuti p eriode indoktrinasi ini. Saya akan pergi musim dingin ini dan menuju tahap berik ut yang diharapkan kepada saya, setelah mendapatkan sebuah dokumen kertas yang m ensertifikasikan bahwa saya telah sanggup bekerja. Tetapi saya adalah seorang manusia, seorang pemikir, pencari pengalaman hidup bu kan pekerja. Pekerja adalah orang yang terjebak dalam pengulangan, seorang budak di dalam sistem yang mengurung dirinya. Sekarang, saya telah berhasil menunjukk an kalau saya adalah budak terpintar. Saya melakukan apa yang disuruh kepadaku s ecara ekstrim baik. Di saat orang lain duduk melamun di kelas dan kemudian menja di seniman yang hebat, saya duduk di dalam kelas rajin membuat catatan dan menja di pengikut ujian yang terhebat. Saat anak-anak lain masuk ke kelas lupa mengerjakan PR mereka karena asyik memba ca hobi-hobi mereka, saya sendiri tidak pernah lalai mengerjakan PR saya. Saat y ang lain menciptakan musik dan lirik, saya justru mengambil ekstra SKS, walaupun saya tidak membutuhkan itu. Jadi, saya penasaran, apakah benar saya ingin menja di lulusan terbaik? Tentu, saya pantas menerimanya, saya telah bekerja keras unt uk mendapatkannya, tetapi apa yang akan saya terima nantinya? Saat saya meningga lkan institusi pendidikan, akankah saya menjadi sukses atau saya akan tersesat d alam kehidupan saya? Saya tidak tahu apa yang saya inginkan dalam hidup ini. Saya tidak memiliki hobi , karena semua mata pelajaran hanyalah sebuah pekerjaan untuk belajar, dan saya lulus dengan nilai terbaik di setiap subjek hanya demi untuk lulus, bukan untuk belajar. Dan jujur saja, sekarang saya mulai ketakutan . Hmmm setelah membaca pidato wisudawan terbaik tadi, apa kesan anda? Menurut saya pidatonya adalah sebuah ungkapan yang jujur, tetapi menurut saya kejujuran yang m enakutkan . Menakutkan karena selama sekolah dia hanya mengejar nilai tinggi, teta pi dia meninggalkan kesempatan untuk mengembangkan dirinya dalam bidang lain, se perti hobi, ketrampilan, soft skill, dan lain-lain. Akibatnya, setelah dia lulus

dia merasa gamang, merasa takut terjun ke dunia nyata, yaitu masyarakat. Bahkan yang lebih mengenaskan lagi, dia sendiri tidak tahu apa yang dia inginkan di da lam hidup ini. Saya sering menemukan mahasiswa yang hanya berkutat dengan urusan kuliah semata. Obsesinya adalah memperoleh nilai tinggi untuk semua mata kuliah. Dia tidak ter tarik ikut kegiatan kemahasiswaan, baik di himpunan maupun di Unit Kegiatan Maha siswa. Baginya hanya kuliah, kuliah, dan kuliah. Memang betul dia sangat rajin, selalu mengerjakan PR dan tugas dengan gemilang. Memang akhirnya IPK-nya tinggi, lulus cum-laude pula. Tidak ada yang salah dengan obsesinya mengejar nilai ting gi, sebab semua mahasiswa seharusnya seperti itu, yaitu mengejar nilai terbaik u ntuk setiap kuliah. Namun, untuk hidup di dunia nyata seorang mahasiswa tidak bi sa hanya berbekal nilai kuliah, namun dia juga memerlukan ketrampilan hidup sema cam soft skill yang hanya didapatkan dari pengembangan diri dalam bidang non-aka demis. Nah, kalau mahasiswa hanya berat dalam hard skill dan tidak membekali dirinya de ngan ketrampilan hidup, bagaimana nanti dia siap menghadapi kehidupan dunia nyat a yang memerlukan ketrampilan berkomunikasi, berdiplomasi, hubungan antar person al, dan lain-lain. Menurut saya, ini pulalah yang menjadi kelemahan alumni ITB y ang disatu sisi sangat percaya diri dengan keahliannya, namun lemah dalam hubung an antar personal. Itulah makanya saya sering menyemangati dan menyuruh mahasisw a saya ikut kegiatan di Himpunan mahasiswa dan di Unit-Unit Kegiatan, agar merek a tidak menjadi orang yang kaku, namun menjadi orang yang menyenangkan dan disuk ai oleh lingkungan tempatnya bekerja dan bertempat tinggal. Orang yang terbaik b elum tentu menjadi orang tersukses, sukses dalam hidup itu hal yang lain lagi. Menurut saya, apa yang dirasakan wisudawan terbaik Amerika itu juga merupakan ga mbaran sistem pendidikan dasar di negara kita. Anak didik hanya ditargetkan menc apai nilai tinggi dalam pelajaran, karena itu sistem kejar nilai tinggi selalu d itekankan oleh guru-guru dan sekolah. Jangan heran lembaga Bimbel tumbuh subur k arena murid dan orangtua membutuhkannya agar anak-anak mereka menjadi juara dan terbaik di sekolahnya. Belajar hanya untuk mengejar nilai semata, sementara krea tivitas dan soft skill yang penting untuk bekal kehidupan terabaikan. Sistem pen didikan seperti ini membuat anak didik tumbuh menjadi anak penurut ketimbang anak kreatif. Baiklah, pada bagian akhir tulisan ini saya kutipkan teks asli (dalam Bahasa Ing gris) Erica Goldson di atas agar kita memahami pidato lengkapnya. Teks asli pida tonya dapat ditemukan di dalam laman web ini: Valedictorian Speaks Out Against S chooling in Graduation Speech . Valedictorian Speaks Out Against Schooling in Graduation Speech by Erica Goldson Here I stand There is a story of a young, but earnest Zen student who approached his teacher, and asked the Master, If I work very hard and diligently, how long will it take for me to find Zen? The Master thought about this, then replied, Ten years. The st udent then said, But what if I work very, very hard and really apply myself to le arn fast How long then? Replied the Master, Well, twenty years. But, if I really, re ally work at it, how long then? asked the student. Thirty years, replied the Master . But, I do not understand, said the disappointed student. At each time that I say I will work harder, you say it will take me longer. Why do you say that? Replied the Master, When you have one eye on the goal, you only have one eye on the path. This is the dilemma I ve faced within the American education system. We are so foc used on a goal, whether it be passing a test, or graduating as first in the clas

s. However, in this way, we do not really learn. We do whatever it takes to achi eve our original objective. Some of you may be thinking, Well, if you pass a test, or become valedictorian, d idn t you learn something? Well, yes, you learned something, but not all that you could have. Perhaps, you only learned how to memorize names, places, and dates t o later on forget in order to clear your mind for the next test. School is not a ll that it can be. Right now, it is a place for most people to determine that th eir goal is to get out as soon as possible. I am now accomplishing that goal. I am graduating. I should look at this as a po sitive experience, especially being at the top of my class. However, in retrospe ct, I cannot say that I am any more intelligent than my peers. I can attest that I am only the best at doing what I am told and working the system. Yet, here I stand, and I am supposed to be proud that I have completed this period of indoct rination. I will leave in the fall to go on to the next phase expected of me, in order to receive a paper document that certifies that I am capable of work. But I contend that I am a human being, a thinker, an adventurer not a worker. A wor ker is someone who is trapped within repetition a slave of the system set up bef ore him. But now, I have successfully shown that I was the best slave. I did wha t I was told to the extreme. While others sat in class and doodled to later beco me great artists, I sat in class to take notes and become a great test-taker. Wh ile others would come to class without their homework done because they were rea ding about an interest of theirs, I never missed an assignment. While others wer e creating music and writing lyrics, I decided to do extra credit, even though I never needed it. So, I wonder, why did I even want this position? Sure, I earne d it, but what will come of it? When I leave educational institutionalism, will I be successful or forever lost? I have no clue about what I want to do with my life; I have no interests because I saw every subject of study as work, and I ex celled at every subject just for the purpose of excelling, not learning. And qui te frankly, now I m scared. John Taylor Gatto, a retired school teacher and activist critical of compulsory schooling, asserts, We could encourage the best qualities of youthfulness curiosi ty, adventure, resilience, the capacity for surprising insight simply by being m ore flexible about time, texts, and tests, by introducing kids into truly compet ent adults, and by giving each student what autonomy he or she needs in order to take a risk every now and then. But we don t do that. Between these cinderblock wa lls, we are all expected to be the same. We are trained to ace every standardize d test, and those who deviate and see light through a different lens are worthle ss to the scheme of public education, and therefore viewed with contempt. H. L. Mencken wrote in The American Mercury for April 1924 that the aim of publi c education is not to fill the young of the species with knowledge and awaken the ir intelligence. Nothing could be further from the truth. The aim is simply to r educe as many individuals as possible to the same safe level, to breed and train a standardized citizenry, to put down dissent and originality. That is its aim in the United States. To illustrate this idea, doesn t it perturb you to learn about the idea of critical thinking? Is there really such a thing as uncritically thinking? To think is to pr ocess information in order to form an opinion. But if we are not critical when p rocessing this information, are we really thinking? Or are we mindlessly accepti ng other opinions as truth? This was happening to me, and if it wasn t for the rare occurrence of an avant-gar de tenth grade English teacher, Donna Bryan, who allowed me to open my mind and ask questions before accepting textbook doctrine, I would have been doomed. I am now enlightened, but my mind still feels disabled. I must retrain myself and co nstantly remember how insane this ostensibly sane place really is.

And now here I am in a world guided by fear, a world suppressing the uniqueness that lies inside each of us, a world where we can either acquiesce to the inhuma n nonsense of corporatism and materialism or insist on change. We are not enlive ned by an educational system that clandestinely sets us up for jobs that could b e automated, for work that need not be done, for enslavement without fervency fo r meaningful achievement. We have no choices in life when money is our motivatio nal force. Our motivational force ought to be passion, but this is lost from the moment we step into a system that trains us, rather than inspires us. We are more than robotic bookshelves, conditioned to blurt out facts we were tau ght in school. We are all very special, every human on this planet is so special , so aren t we all deserving of something better, of using our minds for innovatio n, rather than memorization, for creativity, rather than futile activity, for ru mination rather than stagnation? We are not here to get a degree, to then get a job, so we can consume industry-approved placation after placation. There is mor e, and more still. The saddest part is that the majority of students don t have the opportunity to re flect as I did. The majority of students are put through the same brainwashing t echniques in order to create a complacent labor force working in the interests o f large corporations and secretive government, and worst of all, they are comple tely unaware of it. I will never be able to turn back these 18 years. I can t run away to another country with an education system meant to enlighten rather than condition. This part of my life is over, and I want to make sure that no other c hild will have his or her potential suppressed by powers meant to exploit and co ntrol. We are human beings. We are thinkers, dreamers, explorers, artists, write rs, engineers. We are anything we want to be but only if we have an educational system that supports us rather than holds us down. A tree can grow, but only if its roots are given a healthy foundation. For those of you out there that must continue to sit in desks and yield to the a uthoritarian ideologies of instructors, do not be disheartened. You still have t he opportunity to stand up, ask questions, be critical, and create your own pers pective. Demand a setting that will provide you with intellectual capabilities t hat allow you to expand your mind instead of directing it. Demand that you be in terested in class. Demand that the excuse, You have to learn this for the test is not good enough for you. Education is an excellent tool, if used properly, but f ocus more on learning rather than getting good grades. For those of you that work within the system that I am condemning, I do not mean to insult; I intend to motivate. You have the power to change the incompetencie s of this system. I know that you did not become a teacher or administrator to s ee your students bored. You cannot accept the authority of the governing bodies that tell you what to teach, how to teach it, and that you will be punished if y ou do not comply. Our potential is at stake. For those of you that are now leaving this establishment, I say, do not forget w hat went on in these classrooms. Do not abandon those that come after you. We ar e the new future and we are not going to let tradition stand. We will break down the walls of corruption to let a garden of knowledge grow throughout America. O nce educated properly, we will have the power to do anything, and best of all, w e will only use that power for good, for we will be cultivated and wise. We will not accept anything at face value. We will ask questions, and we will demand tr uth. So, here I stand. I am not standing here as valedictorian by myself. I was molde d by my environment, by all of my peers who are sitting here watching me. I coul dn t have accomplished this without all of you. It was all of you who truly made m e the person I am today. It was all of you who were my competition, yet my backb

one. In that way, we are all valedictorians. I am now supposed d those who stand e you later when rst, let s go get o! ~~~~~~~~~~ Pidato Erica tersebut juga dimuat di blog America dan mendapat tanggapan luas ol eh publik di sana. Silakan baca di sini: http://americaviaerica.blogspot.com/201 0/07/coxsackie-athens-valedictorian-speech.html Kalau ingin melihat video pidato Erica di Youtube, klik ini: to say farewell to this institution, those who maintain it, an with me and behind me, but I hope this farewell is more of a se we are all working together to rear a pedagogic movement. But fi those pieces of paper that tell us that we re smart enough to do s