SPH Lippo Village Student Wins Second Place in the National Writing Competition, “Indonesia Bangkit Menulis”

Michelle Vanny Lim, a Grade 12 SPH Lippo Village student, has won second place in the “Indonesia Bangkit Menulis”, a national writing competition conducted by International Research and Development for Human Beings (IRDH). This academic writing competition was addressed to a wide range of participants all over Indonesia, including elementary through high school students, teachers, and university lecturers. The winning papers were collected and compiled into a comprehensive book, Kitab Indonesia 1, which will be delivered directly to the president of Indonesia, Joko Widodo.

They each wrote about a particular problem and suggested a practical solution for it. In this writing competition, participants are graded on the relevance of a problem they propose to solve and on how realistic the solution is. This year’s theme was to consider how to build Indonesia from the perspectives of the participants. Michelle’s academic paper suggested that the government gather Indonesian diasporas to determine how to solve problems or improve things in Indonesia.

Michelle admitted that she found the theme a bit challenging, due to its broad scope, so she narrowed her topic to social justice and nationalism. Her writing discussed how the government should distribute social justice to all groups within Indonesia so that people can appreciate everyone’s capabilities and potential.  She explained,

“In my writing, I talked about how sometimes the system in Indonesia doesn’t really support some Indonesians who want to give contribution to the country. I gave some examples, such as Randal Hartolaksono, and many other people who are actually brilliant and wanted to contribute to this country, but they chose to work in other countries because Indonesian government didn’t really support them.”

Besides the topic, another challenge that Michelle faced was the writing process. Bahasa Indonesia is not Michelle’s first language, so it was a bit difficult for her to keep pace with the writing process. Despite this setback, she was highly motivated to join this writing competition to improve her writing skills in Bahasa.

“One of the reasons that I wanted to join this competition was to improve my writing in Bahasa Indonesia. I am Indonesian, so why don’t I learn Bahasa? I feel like I have a responsibility as an Indonesian to take care of my country, to contribute to it,” she said.



Michelle credits Bahasa teacher Ibu Francina Carolina for helping her with Bahasa writing skills.

“My Bahasa teacher played a big role, whether she knows it or not. When I first came to [SPH,] I couldn’t write, yet she invested so much time in me. She never said no. She always gave feedback and that improved me as a person, as a writer, to the point that I can write something like this today. I truly wouldn’t have made it here if she hadn’t helped me at that stage,” she added.

Lastly, Michelle encourages other Indonesian youth to have a vision to build Indonesia together and to use our potential to improve this beloved country.

“My vision is not for me, but rather for how I can inspire more youths to do something for the country. This country has so much potential, and it would be such a waste if we do not contribute to it as much as we are supposed to. Make up your mind, or your mind will unmake you. Listen to your potential and maximize it.”

One of the missions of SPH is to educate the young generation to be future leaders who will bring positive transformation to Indonesia through their brilliant ideas. We hope that Michelle Vanny Lim and others will inspire many other students who have a deep sense of nationalism and have the passion to build the nation.

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