Safe Motherhood Day, observed on 28 May, was celebrated this year under the national theme of ‘নিরাপদ প্রসব চাই, স্বাস্থ্য কেন্দ্রে চল যাই’ which can be loosely translated as ‘For safe childbirth, let’s visit health centres’.
To observe the day, seven Academic Sites of Developing Midwives Project (OGSB in Dhaka, FIVDB and Shimantik in Sylhet, GBC-CHP in Mymensingh, HOPE Foundation in Cox’s Bazar, LAMB in Dinajpur, and PHD in Khulna) organised events throughout the day. Following directives from Directorate General of Health Services, they collaborated with local administration, government health professionals and the media in the celebratory efforts. Through popular folk media such as theatre and role plays, mass awareness was built around maternal healthcare and the important role a midwife plays in the life of the mother and the new-born.
In the ‘pop-ups’, final-year students from the Diploma in Midwifery education extended counselling on pre- and post-natal safety, family planning methods, and general wellbeing of the mother and child. Like the small-scale social media campaign carried out for International Day of the Midwife this year, the Developing Midwives Project initiated a similar campaign on Facebook to create mass awareness around midwifery, alongside the Academic Sites and midwives active on social media.
As per its commitment to enhance management excellence in developing business dynamics, the BRAC Business School (BBS), BRAC University conducted a two-day certificate training course on ‘Managing Project with Microsoft Project’ dated 26 and 27 May 2017. In general, the course aimed to enable participants to understand fundamentals of project management and to use Microsoft project in planning & controlling project.
Executives, graduates and students were among the participants. The training course was conducted by Mr. Md. Hasan Maksud Chowdhury, Assistant Professor, BRAC Business School, BRAC University.
The first satellite ground station in Bangladesh built by university students to communicate with “BRAC Onnesha”, the first nano-satellite made by a Bangladeshi university, was inaugurated by Sir Fazle Hasan Abed, KCMG, Chairperson, BRAC; and Chairperson, Board of Trustees, BRAC University.
Inaugurating the ground station on thursday, 25 May 2017 at 11:00am through a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the rooftop of BRACU’s campus building number 4 (44 Mohakhali, Dhaka), Sir Fazle Hasan Abed, KCMG said the responsibility of carrying out frontier research fell on all of the country.
He said the nation was still dependent on utilising benefits of research conducted in foreign countries, some of which invested some 2 to 3 percent of their GDP in this sector, while he was unsure whether Bangladesh invested hardly 0.1 percent.
Sir Fazle Hasan Abed, KCMG said the nation would greatly benefit if the government spends at least one percent of its GDP on research.
BRACU Vice Chancellor Professor Dr Syed Saad Andaleeb, Ph.D. put emphasis on collaboration among universities, the government and industries, saying that if this can be realised then “the sky is the limit”.
The inauguration was followed by a short video presentation and demonstration on antenna control and receiving data/beacon by a team of BRACU students involved in the ground station.
A replica of “BRAC Onnesha’’ was presented to Sir Fazle Hasan Abed by the ground station team. The occasion was then celebrated with the cutting of a cake.
The three students who developed the satellite -- Abdulla Hil Kafi, Raihana Shams Antara and Maisun Ibn Monowar -- connected to the program through Skype from Japan.
The guests expressed hope that the initiatves would not only further Bangladesh’s space research and satellite communication but also develop technical expertise.
"BRAC Onnesha", a cube measuring 10cm along its edge and weighing around one kilogramme, will be deployed from the International Space Station (ISS) once it is taken there on SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket which is scheduled to be launched from Florida, USA on 2 June 2017.
Earlier this year, on 8 February, BRACU became the first Bangladeshi educational institution to get its very own nano-satellite, developed and assembled by three of its students using technology and facilities of a Japanese university.
Side by side six students started working on the ground station and two more students recently joined the team under the guidance of two advisers from the faculty -- Dr Md Khalilur Rahman and Dr Md Hasanuzzaman.
The students are Mohammed Shourobh, Aynul Huda Emil, Bijoy Talukder, Sananda Jagati Choyon, Jamil Arifin, Arafat Haque, Md Sakiluzzaman and Adnan Sabbir.
The ground station set up at BRACU is capable of receiving topographical data gathered by “BRAC Onnesha”, when deployed into low earth orbit at an altitude of around 410km, passing over Bangladesh four to six times every day.
The BRACU researchers will analyse and interpret data taken in the form of high quality photographs, observe space environment and help serve academic and research goals.
The ground station will also receive audio signals and be used for communication during emergencies via amateur "ham" radio equipment, can be and will be connected to many other satellites on purpose and when agreed upon.
The team of students assembled antennas, planned to set-up the room, and designed the tower with BRACU’s architecture department and Brac’s Construction Department.
They have been successfully using softwares to receive beacon (data) from weather satellites like NOAA-18 and NOAA-19, which allows free data access.
The James P Grant School of Public Health invited renowned development practitioner Dr Salehuddin Ahmed to deliver a Talk at the School on "35 Years of Learning Experience" on 25 May. Dr Ahmed touched upon the current scenario in Bangladesh and its path moving forward, including the challenges Bangladesh is currently facing. He also discussed about the success factors relating to BRAC.
Dr Salehuddin Ahmed worked with the world’s largest private development organisation, BRAC in different capacities from 1979 until 2004. He also served as the Pro-Vice Chancellor of BRAC University from 2005 - 2009.
PDC organized a session with the Vice Chancellor of BRAC University, Professor Syed Saad Andaleeb, Ph.D. on 25 May, 2017 at 1.30 pm, GDLN Centre. All the participants of PDC Certificate program were present in this conversation. Professor Andaleeb shared his study result on student engagement in this session. Participants also shared their views and opinion about the study with the Vice Chancellor. It was an open discussion between the Vice Chancellor and PDC participants.
In this rapidly changing world, adjustment is a persistent feature of human personality. A person of adjusting nature can lead a cheerful and wholesome life. The stage of university life is an important part of the student’s life as he/she moves from the total dependence on the teacher, family and curriculum into the complete independence. Moreover, many students move away from their cities into new places which may cause a change in their cultural, social and psychological environment and all these may affect their adjustment to the university life.
Therefore, like previous semester, to aware students about the significance of well adjustment, the Relationship Management Offiice of BRAC University organized a workshop on “Adjustment with Self and Others” with total twenty two freshers of BRACU girls’ Hostel on 25 May 2017 at BRAC University premises. The workshop was conducted by Safina Binte Enayet and Monzia Mushtaq- Psychosocial Counselors and Lecturers of the Counseling Unit, BRAC University.
The objectives of the workshop were to assist students to know about the meaning of adjustment, different aspects of adjustments, characteristics of a well adjusted person and some effective tools to make university life more productive and enjoyable one.
The workshop was started by expressing positive affirmations regarding self. Shortly after that a discussion was held on the different aspects of adjustment. Later on, a meditation was done to deepen their insights about the characteristics of a well adjusted person. In addition, some effective tools to make university life a productive one were shared with them. Students’ contentment was expressed through their enthusiastic participation throughout the whole workshop.
PDC organized a DAAD (German Academic Exchange Service) Information Session for the first time at BRAC University. The representative of DAAD, Ms. Rumana Kabir was the presenter of this Session. The goal and focus of this Information Session was to provide information on higher studies and research in Germany, to advise academicians on funding opportunities, and assist in building ties between German and Bangladeshi institutions of higher education. During the session, the prospects of international scholar exchanges were discussed. DAAD encouraged outstanding academics from BRAC University to consider Germany for higher studies and research. The Information Session was held at the GDLN Centre on 25 May, 2017 from 10:00 am to 12:30 noon. A total of 31 academicians of BRAC University participated in this session.
Dr. Sajid bin Doza, assistant professor of the Department of architecture, BRAC University, along with three final year students Aniqa Nawar, Doito Bonotulshi and Nusrat Faiza and alumna Rubaiya Nasrin attended the 19th ARCASIA 2017 in Jaipur, Rajasthan, India.
ARCASIA is one of the biggest summits of architects in Asia, an organization working to enhance the profession, unite member countries in the Asia, and foster environmentally conscious design. Organized and hosted by Indian Institute of Architects (IIA), 19th ARCASIA Forum focused on the theme "Happiness Through Architecture."
Dr. Sajid Bin DOZA presented his research paper titled, "Rhythm of Light on Brick in Delta - Understanding light, shade and shadow in heritage indoors of ancient Bengal." His paper explored the interplay of light and shade and its impact on human experience. He also served as a member of the committee for ARCASIA - Green and Sustainable Architecture, on behalf of the Institute of Architects Bangladesh (IAB).
Architect Rubaiya Nasrin, an alumna of the Department of Architecture at BRAC University, presented her paper titled “Lessons from Rural based Architecture” which focused on using knowledge from cultural domain for sustainable development.
On May 25, 2017 BRAC University Electrical and Electronic Club (BUEEC), organized their first event of the Summer 2017 semester “Transformation” in UB30401. Transformation is mainly fresher’s orientation event with the goal to introduce the club activities and its existing members to the group of eager freshers who are willing to become a part of the club. Farzana Shabnam (Lecturer and Co-advisor of BUEEC), was present to support new faces. She inspired the faces by telling about the glorious past of BUEEC and also encouraged the freshers to join wholeheartedly the upcoming events.
The program was started with an exciting video showcasing specially made for the newcomers. The main show was hosted delightfully by Md Ismail Hossain (Director, Event Management) and Towfiqur Rahman (Director, Editorial). Freshers got introduced with the President, General Secretary and Directors of all the departments. Many ex-members of the club were present during the program. They inspired the new faces by sharing their experience and pointing out the opportunities that the club provides to its member. The event also covered interactive sessions and dance performance by the core members of the club.
MA TESOL students from BRAC Institute of Languages (BIL) participated in a cross-cultural learning project called COIL (Collaborative Online International Learning), which began in April and ended in May. The project required the students to collaborate with two other students from the College of Western Idaho (CWI) to identify the current challenges faced by the teachers and students in their respective countries. The whole project was guided and monitored by Md. Shams Ud Duha, Lecturer at BIL, and Professor Scott Straub from CWI.
In order to have smooth communication between the students, they introduced each other using personal artifacts in a video and exchanged their videos with one another. This activity helped to make the participants comfortable with each other. Afterwards, the students researched on three current issues prevailing in their respective countries that affect teachers and students. They later exchanged their research results.
At the end of the project, they presented their research and learning outcome in their classes. This project lasted for one month and 14 days, during which the students not only learned to conduct a research, but they also developed the skill of professional communication and made acquaintance with students from a foreign country with similar interests.
Participants at a workshop on Equitable Economic Growth in Sylhet City demanded to build Sylhet a planned city through the implementation of master plan prepared by Professor Jamilur Reza Chowdhury. The participants also demanded ensuring clean, healthy and hygienic environment, making open space for playground and other entertainment facilities. They also urged to make the citizens aware regarding their rights and responsibilities. They felt the need for an empowered city government to fulfill the aspirations of city dwellers.
The kick-off workshop was held under the joint work programme titled Promoting Equitable Economic Growth in Cities as part of a global campaign. BRAC Institute of Governance and Development (BIGD), BRAC University and Sylhet City Corporation (SCC) with the support of Cities Alliance based in Brussels, jointly organized the workshop on May 24, 2017 in Sylhet.
Attending as the Chief Guest, Mayor Ariful Haq Chowdhury said that the public representatives allied with the ruling party get support from the Government but the other representatives do not and now it has become a culture which needs to be changed. Coordination and cooperation among the public offices and government organizations is essential before empowering the city corporation, he added. He proposed for a monthly coordination meeting and said that without coordination and cooperation, it is impossible to complete a single task.
Ajay Suri, Asian Regional Advisor, Cities Alliance; Consultant Dr. K. Rajivan, Dr. Shanawez Hossain, Research Fellow, BIGD and Team Leader of the Project; Mr. Sarwar Jahan Chowdhury, Head of Operations, BIGD; Engineer Ruhul Alam, Chief Engineer, Sylhet City Corporation also delivered their speeches in the event. The programme was moderated by BIGD’s Research Associate S M Gubair Bin Arafat.
Advocate Irfanujjaman Chowdhury, President, Committee of Concerned Citizens (CCC); Aminul Islam Chowdhury, Sammilita Sangskritic Jote; Nasim Hossain, Sylhet City President of Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP); senior politician Barrister Aarash Ali; Gourango Patro, President, Adivasi Forum (Forum of Ethnic People); Professor Tahmina Islam, Department of Social Work, Shahajalal University of Science and Technology; senior journalist Ahmed Nur; City Corporation Counselor Sahanara Begum, Dinar Khan and others also shared their valued opinion and suggestions regarding different problems of the city and their short term and long term solutions.
Recognizing the roles of cities and the challenges they present in developing countries, the Cities Alliance, a global partnership for urban poverty reduction and hosted by the UN Office for Project Services (UNOPS), and BIGD have embarked on this project. The goals of this project are (i) to promote equitable access to public goods and services in context of cities’ specific needs and (ii) support growth trajectories increasingly characterized by equity, inclusion and environmental sustainability.
In continuation of the “Bangla Gaaner Bhabna O Pathchola" musical program series, BRAC University (BRACU) arranged its second musical program on "Rabindra-Nazrul Jayanti". The program took place on May 24, 2017 at BRACU auditorium. The entire program was coordinated by Dr. Sharmind Neelotpol, Asst. Professor, Department of Pharmacy, BRAC University, supported by BRACU’s OCA (Office of Cocurricular Activities) and Simantic Creative Concern. A large number of students and faculty members attended the program. Vice chancellor, Professor Dr. Syed Saad Andaleeb, BRACU was also present.
The students of BRACU along with the renowned Rabindra Sangeet exponent, Fahim Hossain Chowdhury rendered different songs of those two celebrated poets of Bangla. The program began with a Nazrul song from the students and recitation of two poems of Kazi Nazrul Islam from the Khilkhil Kazi, the granddaughter of Kazi Nazrul Islam. The guest artiste, Dalia Nowshin mesmerized the audiences with her Nazrul classical “Srijono Chhonde Anonde Nacho Nataraj”. The audiences were also entertained with many other popular classicals that followed afterwards. “Mayabono Biharini”, “Tumi Robe Nirbobe”, “Durgam Giri Kantar Moru” and “Dur Dipbashini” etc. were among the notable ones.
Young adult is a stage of growth and accomplishment which is full of adventurous desires. This quench of curiosity sometimes compel to experience something unpleasant like abusing drugs which ultimately leads the youth toward an uncertain phase of a miserable life. Like many other countries, in Bangladesh it is a terrible threat to the youth.
Therefore, to educate the BRAC University students about the negative consequences of abusing drugs, the seminar titled “Learning Today, Saving Tomorrow: Awareness on Addiction” on May 17, 2017 and May 24, 2017 at BRAC University Residential Campus was conducted. The objectives of the sessions were to create awareness on addiction, empower the students to take preventive measures to say no to drugs and support the friends to stop taking drugs.
Mr. Morshedul Haque, on behalf of the Residential Campus greeted the audience and introduced the seminar. Renowned Psychologist Professor Mehtab Khanam, started the sessions with insightful concepts about the significant of Mental Health Care. Later on, another guest speaker, Mr. Samir Obaid shared his personal experiences of the negative impacts of abusing drugs and how he recovered from drug addiction. His life experiences regarding his recovery from drugs touched the audience very much. After that, Professor Mehtab Khanam, started with the reflection from the students that how they deal their negative emotions and incidents in their life which was thought provoking for the students. Moreover, she also discussed about the communication style, the rules of assertion, functions of different ego states to say “NO” to drugs and some important tips to prevent addiction. Throughout the session, several role plays were conducted by the students. During the session, the students were very much responsive. The session ended with question answer and by giving thanks to the staff of residential semester and members of the counseling unit to organize the program.
Centre for Environmental and Geographic Information Services (CEGIS) organized a National Dissemination Seminar on Riverbank Erosion Monitoring and Prediction for Jamuna, the Ganges and the Padma Rivers held on 24 May 2017 at CIRDAP International Conference Centre. Professor Ainun Nishat, Professor Emeritus, C3ER, BRAC University chaired the technical session in the aforementioned seminar. CEGIS has been carrying out this study under BWDB project since from 2004.
The seminar mainly disseminated the erosion monitoring and prediction information for the year 2016 and 2017 respectively to the national level stakeholders, decision makers, water resources experts. Mr. Anisul Islam Mahmud, MP, Honorable Minister, Ministry of Water Resources and Mr. Muhammad Nazrul Islam, Bir Protik, Honorable State Minister, Ministry of Water Resources, Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh graced the occasion as Chief Guest and Guest of Honor respectively.
BRAC University Natural Sciences Club has always welcomed the fresher’s to join their club through a trademark event know as Genesis. It is an event which gives the fresh blood an opportunity to introduce themselves to the club as well as they get to know about the activities of the only club that organizes natural science related seminars and events.
The event was organized in the Indoor Games Room of BRAC University. The Indoor Games room was decorated nicely with bright colored papers. The ambience was set and the crowd was eager to meet their future club mates and seniors. The event started with the introductory speech of the General Secretary, Ehsan Sakib. He discussed club hierarchy and departments. His speech was followed by the academic head, Rezwanul Kabir. He talked about the upcoming events and tutorials to the new members. The president of the club, Sheikh Saqif Ahmed asked the newbie’s to introduce themselves and discussed how the whole team of BRAC University Natural Sciences Club is connected to each other through different departments. The president along with the vice-president Jummanah Amatullah, also shared their views with everyone regarding their experience working with this lovable and hardworking family. They also motivated and inspired the audience to gather lots of experience and leadership quality working with the Natural Sciences Club as BUNSC does not only deals with academic contents but also it helps to acquire certain values which help oneself to shine in future.
The programmed ended with a photo session involving the new and old club members. Hopefully, this will be a start of successful journey with the club for a long time.
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