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Jakarta Post

In Indonesia, memorizing Quran gets some students into university

  • Ardila Syakriah

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Wed, July 3, 2019   /  01:54 pm
The Jakarta Post Image
A man reads Quran at a mosque in Jakarta during Ramadan. (The Jakarta Post/Wendra Ajistyatama)

For some youths in Indonesia, reading is a virtue that goes hand-in-hand with religiosity. Taught to read the Quran when they were children, some have grown up memorizing up to 30 chapters of it. Now some universities are valuing their hard work.      State universities are offering test-free entrance to hafiz (Quran memorizers) through their "achievement path" programs, in which high-achieving students in academic and arts fields can skip the regular joint entrance tests and university-administered entrance tests. The program can account as high as 11 percent of the seats provided by each university. The chosen hafiz are among them.  In recent years, more universities have been allowing hafiz to apply for the program, including top universities like the Bogor Agricultural University (IPB) in Bogor, West Java, an...