Recently “Textile Today”- the leading journal of textile and RMG in Bangladesh, has nominated Dr. Md. Tareque Aziz, Associate Professor of BRAC Business School, as their “Consulting Editor”. Textile Today also published an article written by Dr. Aziz on the importance of building customer relationship in retail industry in their recent February’ 2017 edition. In this article Dr. Aziz illustrated the importance of developing and maintaining long-lasting customer relationships in the retail industry. As an initiative to educate textile professionals about the importance of relationship marketing, Dr. Aziz has also presented a key note in “Textile Today’s” recent seminar for textile engineers and sales professionals in Dhaka.
The existing FYAT groups of Fall 2016 and Spring 2017 have successfully completed their pre midterm advising sessions. Probation students from Fall 2016 cohort and fresher students from Spring 2017 cohort were advised on academic expectation and challenges and thus referred by the respective FYAT advisers. The total intake for Spring 2017 semester was 1250 out of which 1053 students (84.24%) were advised and monitored by the FYAT at the end of February, 2017. The main aim of these advising sessions is aiding the new students to overcome transitional issues of BRACU and providing them appropriate support through referrals, consultations and tutorials where applicable.
Left from BRAC University
Mr. Md. Taz Uddin, Department Coordination Officer, Computer Science and Engineering (CSE) got separated from BRAC University in February 2017.
Faculty on Study Leave
Ms. Nishat Zareen Khair, Senior Lecturer, Department of Pharmacy went on Study Leave in February 2017. Ms. Nishat will be pursuing her Ph.D in Cancer Drug Discovery in the University of South Australia.
Ms. Bidoura Mosharraf, Lecturer, Department of Architecture went on Study Leave for pursuing her Master of Architecture from Deakin University, Australia in February 2017.
BIGD Executive Director Dr. Sultan Hafeez Rahman had several meetings in February 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 Mohammad Mejbahuddin Secretary, Economic Relations Division, Ministry of Finance, regarding research and academic programme, Isabel Bucknall and Deepa Solanki, Managers at Adam Smith International - Public Financial Management, regarding possible partnership; Brian D. Hanley, Regional Director for Asia Programmes of Internews, regarding a project of media monitoring, Franziska Korn, Resident Representative of Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung - Bangladesh Office, regarding the ongoing project and board meeting and Ms. Sylvia Borren, BRAC board member from the Netherlands & former Director of Green Peace.
Dr. Rahman also attended Economic Research Division’s (ERD) high-level consultation meeting on “National Policy on Development Cooperation” and many other lectures, seminars and conferences.
Bangladesh’s remarkable progress over the last 40 years in reducing poverty and improving lives can offer valuable lessons for achieving inclusive and sustainable development globally, said Dr. Mushtaque Chowdhury, Vice-Chair of BRAC, at an event in the Palace of Westminster hosted by the UK’s All Party Parliamentary Group for Bangladesh and the Institute of Development Studies (IDS), University of Sussex.
Dr. Chowdhury highlighted the vital contribution that the partnership between Bangladesh and the UK has made to Bangladesh graduating to lower middle-income status, reducing poverty, improving health services and education provision and modernising agriculture. Bangladesh has overtaken India in terms of human development progress, he added. He also said that the collaboration between Bangladesh and the UK has helped to increase our understanding of how to break the cycle of extreme poverty. This learning around what works could make a significant contribution to the reduction of poverty in all of its forms globally.
Meanwhile, the IDS has signed a series of new MoUs with Bangladeshi partners including BRAC, James P Grant School of Public Health (JPGSH) and the BRAC Institute of Governance and Development (BIGD). The MoUs were signed as part of a wider series of events taking place at IDS and in the UK parliament, looking at the rapid progress of development in Bangladesh over the last 40 years. These MoUs provide a productive and mutually beneficial framework for future collaborations that will contribute to global efforts to reduce poverty and inequality, and will harness the organisations' complementary expertise across research, learning, development programming and practice.
Dr. Chowdhury said, "From Robert Chambers helping to inform BRAC's participatory approach to development in the 1990s, to our founder Sir Fazle Hasan sitting on the IDS board – the connections between BRAC and IDS are longstanding and highly valued. I am delighted to be signing this agreement today which will strengthen and evolve these collaborations so both organisations can continue to work together to achieve progressive social change."
Melissa Leach, Director, IDS said over the last four decades IDS has worked alongside colleagues in Bangladesh to tackle some of the world's most pressing challenges and signing these agreements represents an important opportunity to recognise and reaffirm these vital partnerships. "For it is only through global cooperation and collaboration that we can realise our shared visions of a fairer, safer and more sustainable world," she said.
Dr. Sultan Hafeez Rahman, Executive Director, BIGD, said, "These research partnerships will contribute both to the strategic direction of each of the organisations, as well as continue to support the type of informed, evidence-based policy making that has helped achieve the remarkable gains in social development in Bangladesh over the last 40 years". Together IDS, BRAC, JPGSH and BIGD will seek to identify future opportunities that foster mutual learning and cooperation around research and policy engagement activities.
Dr. Shanawez Hossain, Research Fellow of BIGD attended a seminar on National Governance Assessment Framework (NGAF) with the Members of Parliament (MPs), held on February 14, 2017, at the Prime Minister's Office (PMO). The seminar was arranged by Governance Innovation Unit (GIU), PMO and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Bangladesh. Consultants from UNDP presented a draft governance assessment framework in the seminar, where 10 MPs shared their valuable opinions. The session was chaired by Dr. Gowher Rizvi, Advisor to the Prime Minister, whilst Md. Abdul Halim, Director General of GIU, and Sudipto Mukerjee, Country Director of UNDP also attended the event.
UIU conference 2017 on Sustainable Development
ESS faculty, Adnan M. S. Fakir presented the study on “The Endogeneity of Domestic Violence with Women’s Autonomy: Understanding women empowerment through autonomy,” at the UIU conference 2017 on Sustainable Development. The paper explores the empirical difficulties when estimating empowerment effects on domestic violence. The paper was co-authored was with Anika Anjum, Fabiha Bushra & Nabilah Nawar.
SANEM conference 2017
Azraf Ahmed, recent graduate of ESS, presented the study “The Comparative Effect of Corruption and Piketty’s Second Fundamental Law of Capitalism on Inequality,” at the SANEM conference 2017 under the “Budding Economists” segment. The study asks the question whether the structure of capitalism or institutional corruption contributes more to a country’s inequality. The study was co-authored with Adnan M. S. Fakir, lecturer of ESS, Masnun Sajid, Ridhim Gani & Mostafa Hossain.
ESS faculty, Rehnuma Jahan Islam makes it on the headlines again. This time she shares her ideas on start-ups and their possibilities to expand globally. For the full article please refer to the links below:
The James P Grant School of Public Health conducted a flagship course on “Transforming SRHR: Transgender Diversities in Bangladesh”. Held from 12-14 February, the course explored the marginalised gender identities in relation transgender and sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR). Diving deeper, the participants were oriented on the larger histories of transgender and shifting meanings of the term. Furthermore, this course was the start of critical dialogues around hijra, transgender identity, body, gender and SRHR, and mobilise advocacy to address policy issues.
The course was facilitated by noted academics, lawyers, journalists and activists, including Adnan Hossain (University of Amsterdam, Netherlands), Anindya Hajra (Pratyay Gender Trust, Calcutta, India), and Charu Gupta (South Asian Studies Council, MacMillan Center, Yale University), Sara Hossain (Bangladesh Legal Aid and Services Trust), Ananta Yusuf (The Daily Star), Shahnaz Munni (…), Ivan Ahmed Katha (icddr,b), and Joya Sikder (icddr,b).
Japan East Asia Network of Exchange for Students and Youths (JENESYS) is a project sponsored by the Japanese government since 2007. This exchange program is to invite youths from overseas to Japan for promoting mutual understanding and friendship with Japanese youths and citizens. This year, since January 2017, students, young citizens of SAARC nations were invited in different groups under this program to visit this beautiful island nation in the Pacific, which is also known as “Land of the Rising Sun”. Eleven students from Bangladesh, which includes three university and eight high school students, participated in this program from 05th to 14th February 2017. Ramisa Rahman from EEE department, BRAC University was participated in JENESYS program. “We departed Dhaka on 5th February and reached Narita, Japan on 6thevening. As we stepped out of the Airport, we started feeling the taste of chill weather. Luckily we were briefed by Japan Embassy officials about the dresses required to protect ourselves from the chill and cold waves. In Narita View Hotel, we met delegates from other SAARC Nations. Participants were distributed in different groups. We, three university students from Bangladesh, were placed in one group, while rest eight high school students were placed in another group. In my group, there were three Bangladeshi and four participants from each country (Afghanistan, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka).
This visit enhanced our knowledge on Japan’s population, ethnicity, language, religion, history and many other aspects. It is interesting to note that Japan has 127 million population but with single ethnicity which is similar to Bangladesh. While most of member countries of SAARC are represented by multiple ethnic people. So is the case of language. A large number languages are used in SAARC member countries, while Japanese and Bangladeshis are using single language. But, one thing is different in case of Japan; that is the population growth. They are expecting a decline population less than 100 million by 2044. I was impressed knowing their economic progress. This country was devastate in world war II and she did not have any natural resources but she is now one of the largest producers of steel and their industries have grown fast making the country very rich.
Our first visit was at Narita Izumi Incineration plant. This is a very interesting place to see, because it recycles the waste products and produces construction material. They also ensure overall environmental impact by using advanced technology to minimize dioxin and other harmful emissions. There is distinct difference in the concept of industrialization process in Japan. They are more concerned on the effect on human and the environment. We also visited Tokyo Rinkai Disaster Prevention Park, which acts as a central base of operations for disaster prevention in the Tokyo metropolitan area. Ithouses emergency response facilities including local disaster management headquarters; as well as serves as an Institution that compiles disaster related information and co-ordinates emergency disaster measures. It is because this country is frequently hit by earthquake. So, like us they have no other alternatives than to remain prepared against such natural challenges.
For the first time, I have experienced riding of Shinkansen (Japan fast bullet train). The view from the window changes with speed from a city high raised building to a snow covered countryside. Before I could enjoy diversescenic beauties en-route Tokyo to Iwate,we reached our destination very fast. Most of my group members experienced snowfalls for the first time, hence they were highly excited. There are many mountains in Iwate. It is located northeast of Japan along the Pacific Oceans. We called on Kuji city mayor and visited Kuji wave power station. This place was hit and greatly damaged by the great east Japan Earthquake and the Tsunami. The power station is a latest industry built in Japan (October 2016). People from all walks of life worked together to develop this plant. It uses tidal power to generate electricity. It’s really worth to visit there. It was also a great honor for me and my other group members to be appointed as Honorary Ambassador of Tourism of Kuji City.
The most interesting part of JENESYS program was staying with a host family. We, two Bangladeshi (me and Rupkotha)and one Afghan (Mursan Kamal),were hosted by a single family for two nights. We had wonderful time with them. They taught us how to greet, how to dress, how to eat in Japanese style. Although the Japanese eat raw foods, like shushi, salads etc; but for us they prepared well cooked foods. It appeared to me that Japanese are very hospitable nation and possesses similar to our custom and traditions. This visit also enabled us to learn about the cultures and traditions of other participating nations and make new friends.
Nine days visit in the land of sunrise was full of new experiences and sweet memories. It opened my eyes and enabled me to see lots of interesting aspects of life. I learned about a country which developed very fast from the scratches and presently dominates the world in economy. The scenic beauty of the country; discipline, patriotism and simplicity of the Japanese people amazed me a lot. It also helped me to learn about other SAARC nations. I sincerely thank Japanese government for making such endeavor for enriching the youths with diverse knowledge and experiences".
In February 2017, the Office of Student Affairs (OSA) continued with it’s the tutorial program for all BRACU students, especially the freshmen, at-risk students and students on academic probation. OSA offered tutorials in selected 100-level courses where student failing rate is very high and students are facing difficulty. Along with the faculty members from OSA, student tutors, who are senior students of BRACU, conducted these tutorial sessions. During the tutorial sessions faculty members and tutors give individual attention to students’ specific needs and students have the opportunity to engage with the course materials more directly.
Tutorials offered by OSA are for MAT110, PHY111, MAT120, CSE110, BUS101 and ECO101 courses. Total 730 students (one student came multiple times) attended in 102 tutorial sessions in the above mentioned courses in February, 2017.
In the month of February 2017, individual and group advising sessions with probation students before midterm exam was taking place. Students with probation status, both first time probation students and last chance probation students, were coming to the Office of Student Affairs (OSA) for individual and/or group probation advising with their advisers. Solaiman Jony, Tanjia Afrin Turin and Fatema Israt Jahan, probation advisers from the OSA conducted the advising sessions. Students were advised on different academic issues and suggested to take preparation ahead of their midterm exam in order to perform better in the exam.
Total 98 probation students (one student came multiple times) both attended the probation advising sessions.
Apart from the advising, FYAT team had arranged meetings with FYAT mentors (Fall 2016) where they were asked to refer the probation students to the tutorial sessions and monitor them. During these meetings the FYAT team responded to the queries of mentors and guided them how to interact with students and FYAT advisers.
Khonder Jeaul Karim, a student of Applied Physics and Electronics program in the Mathematics and Natural Sciences Department presented his thesis work (APE 400) and Internship Report (APE 450) on February 13, 2017. The thesis work was supervised jointly by Dr. Firoze H. Haque and Mr. Muhammad Lutfor Rahman. The internship work was supervised jointly by Mr. Muhammad Lutfor Rahman and Mr. Mahabubul Haq. Mr. Mahbubul Haq, Director General of Atomic Energy Research Establishment (AERE), Savar, Dhaka and former Director of Institute of Electronics and Energy Institute. The Viva Board was chaired by Professor A. A. Z. Ahmad. Dr. Taffazal Hossain, Dr. Firoze H. Haque, Mr. Mahabobe Shobahani and Mr. Muhammad Lutfor Rahman were also present in the Viva-Board as members of the Examination Committee.
The office of Career services And Alumni Relations (OCSAR) in association with Banglalink launched “Strategic Assistant Program” for the Last year students of BRAC University on 13th February 2017 in BRACU Indoor Games Room UB03 (9th Floor).
This program basically gives the opportunity to fresh graduates to kick start their career and to develop themselves into a leader of tomorrow. Mr. Monzula Morshed Chief Human resources and administration officer, Mr. Mustafa Raihanul Alam Head of Talent Acquisition and Development, Mr. Khaled bin Obaid Talent Acquisition Specialist, Ms. Nujhat Jannatun Naeem Digital Brands Manager, Mr. Parvez Ahmed Corporate Group Manager and Mr. Zarif Hassan Strategic Assistant were present in the session and mesmerized the students by pointing out the fact that being a strategic assistant will not only give them an opportunity to work with the world-class team but also empower them with a lot of opportunities which will help Banglalink to be more successful.
Ar. Dr. Sajid Bin DOZA joined the congress based on 'Future of Vernacular Architecture' in the Architects Regional Council of Asia-ARCASIA in Bangkok, Thailand.
Dr. Doza presented an abstract on Ancestor's Wisdom of Deltaic Architecture of Bangladesh. 12 countries from Asia participated in this congregation of ARCHITECTS. To promote sustainable approach through the light of traditional craftsmanship was the main focal point of this congress. Dr. DOZA placed the glorious and splendid examples of cultural heritage of Bangladesh through his presentation.
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