To celebrate the month of Independence, as well as to revive the spirit of patriotism, a cultural program titled ‘Desh, Mati O Shwadhinatar Gaan’ was organized by the BRAC University (BRACU) on March 21, 2017 at the BRAC University Auditorium. The program was a part of the regular Bangla musical programs of BRAC University, which was organized to ignite the cultural sprit and awareness among the students by emphasizing the rich musical legacy of Bangla songs.
The entire program was conducted by Dr. Sharmind Neelotpol, Asst. Professor, Department of Pharmacy, BRAC University with a message: “Every song has its own story. Every song is interrelated. We wanted the BRAC University students to have a taste of the traditional Bangla songs and to enlighten the inner spirit of the new generation.” The participants of the event were the students of different departments of the University. The program started with an inauguration speech from the Vice Chancellor of the University, Prof. Dr. Syed Saad Andaleeb. In his speech, he encouraged the students and the faculty members to come forward and engage with their cultural heritage and values. Dalia Nawsheen, an artist of the Shwadhin Bangla Musical Troup and renowned Nazrul Sangeet exponent was invited who brightened up the event with the sensational war songs. The program was attended by a large number of students as well as faculty members of the BRACU.
Two students pursuing MS in biotechnology presented their thesis work on 20 March 2017. One of the students Ms. Saifa Sharmin worked on value added poultry feed for improved health of our poultry. Her thesis title was “Application of Lactobacillus Species in the Development of Probiotic Poultry Feed as an Alternative to Antibiotic Growth Promoters”. The research was carried out under the joint supervision of Professor Naiyyum Choudhury, Chairperson, BAERA and Dr. Monzur Morshed Ahmed, Senior Scientific officer, BCSIR. The work was carried out at BCSIR. The second presenter, Ms. Poulomi Das worked in synthesis of artificial bone tissue and validation of the synthetic material with the natural bone. Title of her thesis was Fabrication and Characterization of Hydroxyapatite Based Biocompatible Composite Scaffold for Bone Tissue Engineering. The research work was carried out at the Tissue Banking and Biomaterial Research Unit, Atomic Energy Research Establishment (AERE) under the joint supervision of Dr. S. M. Asaduzzaman, Director, TB&BRU, AERE and Professor Naiyyum Choudhury, Chairperson, BAERA. The examination committee was headed by Professor A.A.Z. Ahmad. Professor M. Mahboob Hossain and Dr. Aparna Islam were the other members. Teh committee appreciated the quality of the research work.
BRAC University has allocated a sum of Taka 50 Lac as seed loan to a number of BRAC University student entrepreneurs as a part of its business incubation programme. Each entrepreneurial team will receive a maximum of Taka 5 Lac as interest-free loan to be repaid in 4 years.
An event headlined ‘Business Incubation Fund Distribution Ceremony’ was held on March 20, 2017 to mark the occasion. The money is being given through Centre for Entrepreneurship Development (CED): BRAC University’s entrepreneurship development wing which also doubles up as a think tank involved in various research and capacity development activities pertaining to the progress of Bangladeshi entrepreneurs.
The recipients of the seed fund were selected after three rigorous business plan competitions organized by CED. Business ideas contrived by students and concretely committed on paper as business plans were reviewed by judging panels before winners could be selected. During the ceremony an audience comprising students, their guardians, academia, and entrepreneurs learnt about student run businesses which were inspiring both in terms of creativity as well as market traction.
Three teams received the first installment of seed funds through this ceremony. Porashona Online (Team Ninja), the first business to get the loan, is an online educational content provider that will cater to the academic needs of high school students. Ten’s 360, the next winner, is involved in the production of corporate gift articles and other marketing devices. They already have an established clientele. The final recipient, Rapido Deliveries, serves the parcel delivery and business transaction needs of the burgeoning E-commerce businesses of Dhaka.
Other winning businesses enrolled in the CED business incubation programme were also present during the occasion and shared their success stories with a very enthusiastic audience. The students were addressed in a welcome note by CED Adviser, Professor Dr. Rahim B. Talukdar. Professor Syed Saad Andaleeb, Ph.D., the honourable Vice Chancellor of BRAC University spoke on the occasion as the Chief Guest and lauded the importance of engaging with student entrepreneurs at the university level. CED alumni consisting of entrepreneurs and educators were also present in the occasion.
Post midterm advising with probation students
In March 2017, post midterm individual advising session was held with probation students. A reminder SMS was sent through registrar office to 139 first time probation students, 70 last chance probation students and 209 parents regarding attending post midterm advising and tutorials. Students reported to probation advisers at the Office of Student Affairs (OSA) for these advising sessions. Solaiman Jony, Tanjia Afrin Turin and Fatema Israt Jahan, probation advisers from the OSA conducted the individual and group advising sessions. Total 191 probation students, both first time and last chance, attended the advising sessions. During the advising sessions students informed their midterm grades and setup action plans for final exam with their respective adviser. In addition, a reminder email was sent to the department probation advisers regarding conducting individual and/or group advising session with the first time probation students from their respective departments. In consequence, departmental probation advisers referred the students to OSA for remedial support services e.g. tutorials.
Moreover, OSA also monitored the progress of 14 probation students who were allowed to take participation in the tutorial classes only offered by OSA. These students have not been advised with any regular courses in Spring 2017 semester and based upon successful attendance and performance in the tutorial classes; they will be considered further chance to continue at BRAC University.
The Office of Student Affairs (OSA) arranged and coordinated tutorials in MAT 110, MAT 120, PHY 111, CSE 110, BUS 101 and ECO101 courses throughout the March, 2017. Four student tutors along with two faculty members from OSA conducted these tutorial classes. During the tutorial sessions faculty members and student tutors gave individual attention to students’ specific needs and students had the opportunity to engage with the course materials more directly. In March 2017, total 872 students (one student came multiple times) attended in 100 tutorial sessions in the above mentioned courses.
Moreover, OSA also collected midterm grades of MAT 110, MAT 120, PHY 111 and BUS 101courses from the respective departments and identified the students who got below 60% marks in midterm examination and were at risk of failing the course. In MAT 110, 161 (27.19%) students out of 592; in PHY 111, 266 (53.2%) out of 500 students and in MAT 120, 85 (32.69%) students out of 260 got below 60% marks. On the other hand, in BUS 101 course 126 students out of 497 were in at risk category. These students and their parents were notified through texts and phone calls regarding their academic status and they were strongly advised to attend the tutorial classes on regular basis.
“I feel like there are some blockade inside me which was removed after the meditation. I am feeling so light and relaxed which I cannot express in words. I never knew that breathing can be such refreshing!”- this was a feedback given by one of the participants after the meditation session.
Meditation is an ancient practice that helps to control our own mind and discover ourselves. It helps us to do away with negative thoughts, worries, anxiety and all factors that can help us feeling blissful. It allows our mind to focus on one thing and isolate us from all worldly things. It is believed that all divine powers live in the heart and meditation is the only route to dive deep into our heart. Though meditation is not an answer to all our problems, but it sure results in a harmony between body and soul. To bring in the full benefits of meditation, regular practice is necessary.
With this awareness, the Counseling Unit of BRAC University organized a series of workshop on "Meditation" for the students, faculty members and staff throughout the month of March 2017. The Counseling Unit conducted in total 7 sessions and each session was designed based on different themes. The overall objectives of the workshops were to train us to go beyond the mind and experience our essential nature-which is described as peace, happiness, and paradise. Moreover to enhance positivity in life several meditation exercise techniques were done in the session. Around 130 participants attended the workshops and they highly appreciated it. From their feedbacks it is evident that it was very effective, relaxing and they want to do this type of workshop on a regular basis. Overall, it was a peaceful experience for the participants as well as for the members of the Counseling Unit.
Anxiety is the subjectively unpleasant feelings of dread over something unlikely to happen. Exam anxiety is the feeling of nervousness and distress experience before or during the exam. When it gets out of control, can lead to problems.
Therefore, to make students aware about the concepts of Exam Anxiety, one session of the workshop on “Smart Ways to Deal with Exam Anxiety” was held on Sunday, March 19, 2017 from 07:00pm-08:30pm at BRAC University Residential Campus. The main objective of the workshop was to create awareness among students to manage their exam anxiety constructively. Two members of the Counseling Unit, Ms. Monzia Mushtaq and Mr.Saifur Rahman conducted the session with sixteen students. In the session counselors discussed about the scientific definition of Anxiety and Stress, when it is healthy and when it is unhealthy, causes of exam anxiety, unhealthy ways of deal with exam anxiety and how to manage exam anxiety before, during and after the exam. During the session various methods such as individual, group activities, imagination exercise, think-pair-share were used to make the session interactive and participatory. At the end of the session, a meditation was conducted to help the students to feel calmer and relaxed within their mind and body. Students who participated in the workshop were highly satisfied with the content delivered.
A seminar on ‘Retailing- Prospects and Challenges: An Asian Perspective’ was hosted by BRAC University Marketing Association (BUMA) on 19th March 2017 at Indoor Games of BRAC University. The honorable Dean of BRAC Business School, Prof. Dr. Iftekhar Ghani Chowdhury was the chief guest of this seminar, while the keynote speaker was Dr. Md. Tareque Aziz, Associate Professor, BRAC Business School. Several respected faculty members of BRAC Business School and Mr. Alvi Chowdhury, Brand Manager of Coopers, were also present in the program. In this seminar Dr. Aziz gave the students an insight to retail marketing; he talked about the history of retailing – how it started and how e-retailing emerged in this century, the rise and popularity of retailing in the western market then finally he talked about the opportunities along with the challenges of retailing in Asian domain. It was one of the most successful events of BRAC University Marketing Association (BUMA) with overwhelming participation in large numbers by the students. This was the first time the MBA students along with the BBA students participated in great numbers in a seminar organized by a Business club of BRAC University. In the end, there was a small quiz competition at the end of the seminar where the top 3 performers were awarded among other potentials.
Pre-Registration, Summer 2017
Students attending the Residential Semester (RS) in Summer 2017 will be registered for courses by the Registrar’s Office; therefore, they do not have to do pre-registration.
BIGD’s ED Dr. Sultan Hafeez Rahman had several meetings in March 2017 with a number of distinguished personalities such as prominent academics, policy makers and researchers regarding the research collaborations and other relevant issues of BIGD.
Dr. Rahman had meetings with Sir Fazle Hasan Abed, Chairperson BRAC; Anir Chowdhury, Policy Advisor, Prime Minister’s Office, Bangladesh; Md. Nojibur Rahman, Senior Secretary, Internal Resource Division (IRD) and Chairman, National Board of Revenue (NBR), Ministry of Finance; Tim Dobermann, Hub Economist for Bangladesh, IGC; Fahad Khalil, Chair, Castor Professor of Economics, University of Washington; Adnan Khan, Lecturer, London School of Economics and Political Science and Research & Policy Director, IGC; Dr. Nasir Uddin Ahmed, Commissioner, ACC; Samar Verma Ph.D. Senior Program Officer, IDRC; Professor Ramkumar Mishra, Director, Institute of Public Enterprise (IPE); Mohan Das Manandhar, Senior Advisor, Nepal; Dr. Zafrul Islam, Lead Procurement Specialist of the World Bank and Task Team Leader, PPRP-II; Bethany L. McGann, Associate Coordinator, Research and Knowledge Management for the RESOLVE Network and Senior Program Assistant at the U.S. Institute of Peace and Barrister Manzoor Hasan, Chair, UNCAC Coalition, Executive Director, South Asian Institute of Advanced Legal Human Rights Studies (SAILS).
Dr. Hafeez attended the Consultation Workshop on Strengthening Public Private Partnership for Inclusive and Sustainable growth of Bangladesh Fisheries Sector as distinguished discussants organized by the Department of Fisheries and Bangladesh Shrimp and Fish Foundation.
Dr. Rahman also attended seminar on "Bangladesh in Focus: What can we learn about sustainable and inclusive development?” at IDS; IGC’s International Conference on Development Economics; and Gunijon Songbordhona - 2017 organized by Daily Bonik Barta.
As a part of Ethics and Culture course (HUM 103), the drama ‘Train to Pakistan’ was staged by the theatre-group ‘Jahangirnagar Theatre’ on March 17, 2017, at Markuli Hall of BRAC University, Savar Campus. The objective of this drama was to make the students gain ideas regarding morality from a different perspective besides just studying the theories in classrooms. The program began with the introductory speech of Mr. Md. Mostafizur Rahman, Co-ordinator of Ethics and Culture. Afterwards, Mr. Farid Ahmed, Associate Professor of Jahangirnagar University, briefly discussed the objective of the drama for further clarification on the students’ part.
The drama 'Train to Pakistan' was adapted from the novel 'Train to Pakistan' by Khushwant Singh, which is based on the partition of India and Pakistan in 1947. The book focuses on how the identity of a human exceeds the boundary of religion, caste or even nationality. It is a constructive demonstration of how religion was used as a tool for the political benefits during 1947's partition.
The drama 'Train To Pakistan' tried to portray that human being should not be treated based on their religious identity or social status because, at the end of the day, we are all human beings with universal human rights that are meant to be respected by all. Moreover, the drama showed that basing people’s identity on just religion is not enough to maintain the unity between them and the communities they live in. The ending of the drama showed the protagonist of the drama, Jugga, sacrificing his life by saving the train not only for his loved one and but also for the people of the train who were religiously different yet part of his own community. Thus, Jugga represents the spirit of mankind in this drama.
When the drama ended, Mr. Rehan Ahmed, Campus Superintendent, shared a few words with students on the message of the drama and the importance of re-thinking on the issue of how people need to be treated not just based on religion but rather as human beings. All management staff played a significant role to make the event a successful one, which ended with Jahangirnagar Theatre presenting a gift token to BRAC University.
BRAC University (BRACU) on Friday 17 March, 2017 observed the birth anniversary of the Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman with befitting manner. The university organized a seminar in the university auditorium at 11:00 am to talk about different glorified aspects of the life of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. BRACU Vice Chancellor Professor Syed Saad Andaleeb Ph.D. attended the occasion as chief guest while Dean of BRAC Business School, Professor Iftekhar Ghani Chowdhury, Ph.D., presided over the seminar. Faculty members, administration staff and students of BRACU attended the event as well to celebrate the birthday of architect of the nation with respect and enthusiasm.
In the seminar, three students of BRACU gave presentations on the great role played by Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in Bangladesh’s emergence as an independent country. They also illustrated how dynamic leadership of Bangabandhu had organized a nation to fight against Pakistani rulers. In his speech, BRACU Vice Chancellor Professor Syed Saad Andaleeb Ph.D. talked about significance of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman’s role behind the foundation of Independent Bangladesh. Later, the seminar ended with cutting cakes as part of Bangabandhu's birthday anniversary celebration program. BRAC University office of co-curricular activities and office of student affairs provided necessary support on the occasion.
On March 16, 2017, Ms. Shahana Sharmin, Senior Lecturer, Department of Pharmacy, BRAC University received the NST fellowship award for 2016-2017 year from the Ministry of Science and Technology-Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh as a Ph.D. student. She was awarded with this scholarship by the honorable Prime Minister, Sheikh Hasina, People’s Republic of Bangladesh. Ms. Shahana Sharmin is currently doing her Ph.D. in the Department of Microbiology, University of Dhaka.
Office of Career Services & Alumni Relations (OCSAR) in association with Diakonia Live organized a career session on 15thMarch 2017(Wednesday) from 4.00pm to 5.00pm in BRACU GDLN Centre. This skype seminar was exclusively organized for BRACU students interested to pursue masters in France. Ms. Hong Jie, the Director for International Affairs of IESEG School of Management , France provided a brief about the admission process, opportunities for BRACU students who wants to study in IESEG, France.
Ms. Samiha Nusrat from OCSAR coordinated the event.
One student of the UG biotechnology program, Dola Khandaker gave her thesis presentation required on Wednesday, 15 March, 2017 in Room UB21511 of the MNS Department. The title of her thesis was ‘In Silico Structural and Functional Analysis of Cobra Snake Venom Component- Kaouthiagin.’
The Viva-Voce Examination for the presentation was chaired by Professor A. A. Z. Ahmad and attended by Dr. Mahboob Hossain, Dr. Aparna Islam, Ms. Jebunnesa Chowdhury and Ms. Eusra Mohammad.
1 March, 2017:
Five students, Tashfia Anwar, Tasnim Tamanna, Lutful Alam, Syeda Samiha Haque and Kazi Sarjana Safain, pursuing BS in microbiology presented their internship reports on 1 March 2017. They carried out their internship at ICDDR, B, and ideSHi under the supervision of Dr. Mahboob Hossain and Ms. Fahareen Binta Mosharraf. The viva-voce examination was chaired by Professor A. A. Z. Ahmad and attended by Professor Mahboob Hossain, Mr. Mahbubul Hasan Siddiqee, Ms. Fahareen Binta Mosharraf, Ms. Namista Islam, Ms. Trosporsha Tasnim Khan and Ms. Nazneen Jahan.
15 March, 2017 :
Nine students, Kabirul Islam Kanon ,Yashna Tahjib Meghla, Aqief Afzal, Ariful Azam, Prateem Das, Fahim Bin Najib, Fahim Sarwar, Tanzir Rasul Taman and Fuad Mustafa presented their internship reports on Wednesday, 15 March, 2017 and Thursday, 16 March, 2017 respectively in Room UB 21511 of the MNS Department.
The Viva-Voce Examination for the presentation was chaired by Professor A. A. Z. Ahmad and attended by Dr. Aparna Islam, Ms. Jebunnesa Chowdhury and Ms. Eusra Mohammad.
23 March 2017 :
Seven students, Jakia Rahman, Sinthia Kabir Mumu, Sameya Tasneem Aurna, Aakib Parvez Sajol, Anzinur Nahar Shamantha, Sadia Tasnim and Md. Mahmud Al Hasan, pursuing BS in microbiology presented their internship reports on 23 March 2017. They carried out their internship at ICDDR, B, and ideSHi, under the supervision of Dr. Mahboob Hossain and Ms. Fahareen Binta Mosharraf . The Viva-Voce Examination for internship was chaired by Professor A. A. Z. Ahmad and attended by Prof. Mahboob Hossain, Mr. Mahbubul Hasan Siddiqee, Ms. Fahareen Binta Mosharraf, Ms. Namista Islam, Ms. Trosporsha Tasnim Khan and Ms. Nazneen Jahan.
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