The Merdeka Belajar-Kampus Merdeka (MBKM) [Independent Learning–Independent Campus] policy brings great challenges for university residents, especially new students. Several programs are offered under the policy. One such program is the Indonesian International Student Mobility Awards – a Government of Indonesia scholarship scheme to fund Indonesian students for a mobility program at top universities overseas. Students from all Indonesian universities are eligible to participate in it. However, to get selected for the program, students must meet certain criteria. In addition, they must have specific skills which should be developed and demonstrated from their first year at the university. The 21st-century skills are particularly essential for students as a provision to join the program. This article discusses the 21st-century critical skills that students must develop for being accepted to the Indonesian International Student Mobility Awards. The authors have analyzed relevant literature on 21st-century skills such as critical thinking, problem-solving, communication, literacy, leadership, and responsibility. Based on the results, the article concludes that all the aforementioned skills must be developed by new students from the beginning of their study at the university to successfully be included in the program and gain valuable benefits for future life and career.
Keywords: 21st-century skills, Indonesian International Student Mobility Awards, new students