Dedicated, Afifa Syansun Zulfikar Receives Award from the French Government of

Jombang, NU Online East Java

Not many women have brilliant achievements. Culture and society’s assumption that women should be behind men are among the causes. However, this does not apply to As’adiyah Dormitory Caregivers, Darul Ulum Islamic Boarding School Jombang. The fruit of his dedication eventually earned him an award, the L’Ordre des Palmes Academiques.

To NU Online East Java, Hj Afifa Syamsun Zulfikar explained that the award was given by the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports of the French Government.

“This is a world-class award given by the French Prime Minister to a number of dedicated academics with the title Chevalier or knighthood,” said Ning Afifa, her nickname, Tuesday (27/04/2021).

alumnus who won the Chevening Award at Sheffield Hallam University, UK, in the field of leadership and management in education , spoke about the existing gifts.


“The award is intended for academics who have made a major contribution to cooperation between France and their country in various disciplines,” he explained.

It was further stated that since 2007, he has facilitated the implementation of cooperation between Unipdu and the French Cultural Center in Surabaya (CCCL) which is now an IFI or Institut Francais Indonesia Surabaya through the Fond d’Alembert.

At that time, CCCL Surabaya invited several French Muslim intellectuals to give seminars on Islam and secularism in France. Furthermore, he initiated a more solid collaboration between the Darul Ulum Islamic Boarding School (Unipdu) Peterongan Jombang and the French Embassy by participating in the Warung France network. The activity which took place in 2013 was attended by 26 well-known public and private universities in Indonesia.

“Warung France is an institution under the auspices of the university as a center for learning French language and culture. Unipdu itself uses the name Lesehan France,” said the wife of HM Zulfikar As’ad.

With the French Lesehan, Unipdu has the opportunity to organize various programs. Good arts and culture, science, technology and education from the center of French culture.

A number of cultural and linguistic activities have been organized. Starting from presentations on French culture and language for Unipdu students and school students in the Darul Ulum Islamic Boarding School. Likewise presentations on college studies in France, performances of contemporary circus artists and the like.

Regarding that belief, he feels that everything is a gift from Allah SWT who gives all extraordinary blessings and conveniences.

“This is actually a tribute to Unipdu, because I am part of the campus and of course I cannot work alone without the support of the foundation leadership, chancellor, dean, staff and lecturers as well as the campus language study center team, as well as the significant role of the principal under the auspices of the Darul Ulum Islamic Boarding School,” he explained.

Likewise, the award cannot be separated from the very large role of the Director of IFI Surabaya, Benoit Bavouset who strongly supports various arts, culture and science and technology programs at Unipdu.

This mother of five children has high motivation to take part because she continues the dream of KH M As’ad Umar as the initiator of the Darul Ulum 2 Superior High School and BPPT. Almaghfur , who is also his father-in-law, was the founder of Unipdu, who at that time really hoped and always aspired to make campuses and schools in local Islamic boarding schools whose graduates were actually students to stand out.

“That is so that later the students will be able to take part and compete nationally and even internationally,” he said.

After receiving the award, he will continue the existing cooperation. Such as by socializing to the community, especially schools and universities in Jombang.

“And further enhance cooperation in other fields, such as student and/or lecturer exchanges and joint research of Unipdu lecturers and/or students and French university lecturers,” he said.

The student from the doctoral program at the State University of Surabaya, the education management study program, said that the award was very unexpected. Therefore it will not be a burden.

“In fact, this award is an encouragement to develop research collaboration between Unipdu and universities in France in terms of science and technology, social sciences and education in the future,” he said.

At the same time, she is very grateful for the support from her husband in every French Lesehan activity. Including their children who are also happy for the awards they have won.

At the end of the conversation, he advised young people, especially Islamic boarding schools, to develop foreign languages. Not only English and Arabic, but also French.

“French is spoken not only in Europe but also in Africa, America and Asia. Even the countries of Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia, which incidentally are Muslim countries, have made French their official language,” he concluded.

The awarding took place at the Unipdu auditorium, Peterongan, Jombang.

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