BRAC University organized an orientation program for the new students of the Fall 2022 semester on 2 October, 2022. The program was held at International Convention City Bashundhara.
Professor Vincent Chang, Vice-Chancellor, attended the event as the chief guest while Dr. Dave Dowland, Registrar, Dr. Rubana Ahmed, Proctor, Sami Ahmed, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Startup Bangladesh who is an alumnus of BRAC University, along with other academic deans and heads attended the event. Tahsina Rahman, Joint Director, Student Life, moderated the program.
Professor Vincent Chang spoke on Bangladesh’s aim to become a developed nation by 2041, explaining that it is possible focusing on four factors -- money, technology, people and market. He termed quality education which develops people, as a key factor for economic development. He also mentioned that there is a strong consensus in social sciences and among educators that education is one of the most important factors that can improve social mobility. “Education is the source of national pride. A business may come and go, a dynasty may rise and fall, but a university may last forever,” he said.
Reminiscing a poem by William Ernest Henley that Nelson Mandela often recited during his 27 years of imprisonment which ends with, “I am the master of my fate; I am the captain of my soul,” Professor Chang said to the new students “ Welcome to BRAC University, where you may learn to master your fate and the fate of the country”.
Dr. Dave Dowland welcomed the students. He informed of several recent student-focused initiatives of BRAC University, including collaborations with universities worldwide and becoming the only South Asian member of Open Society University Network. He also encouraged the students to watch out for opportunities, such as international travel and exchange programs, and develop the skills, creativity and resourcefulness to navigate through the world and bring about positive social changes.
Dr Rubana Ahmed urged students facing difficulties to reach out to her office irrespective of whether the matter was academic or non-academic.
Sami Ahmed said as the first and only flagship venture capital fund of ICT Division sponsored by the Bangladesh government, his company imparts training for graduates specifically on the ICT sector for its enormous potential in adding value to the economy. He mentioned that startups are a combination of innovation and entrepreneurship, which, in the right circumstances, can rake in millions of dollars. This has been achieved by some notable start ups from Bangladesg and since a conducive ecosystem is currently available, BRAC University students should also engage in such initiatives right form their university years, he said.
Later in the program, BRAC University acknowledged successes of students in the recent past by presenting certificates and tokens of appreciation. The students were –
Atonu Roy Chowdhury from the Department of Mathematics and Natural Science, who was one of the members of the Team Bangladesh to represent the country in the International Mathematics Competition for University Students (IMC) for the first time in 2022. Among 100 teams, Bangladesh secured 10th position with an overall score of 197.8, Atonu has won a First Prize, and ranked 88th among 633 students worldwide.
Mohsina Taz from the Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering who took part in Huawei’s Seeds for the Future, tech-based case competition and secured a position in the Top 9 to participate in the Thailand round. In the Asia Pacific Region Competition, her Team, Ether has placed the 3rd rank among the total 24 teams consisting of 120 participants from 16 different countries.
Nayem Hossain Saikat, a final year student of Computer Science and Engineering Department. As the team leader of Bracu Duburi, Saikat, along with his team mates and specially, one of their co advisor, Sayantan Roy Arko, have made a new version of BRACU Duburi which is called Duburi 3.0.Nayem, along with his team members, has participated the most prestigious underwater robotics competition in the world, Robosub2022, USA. They have competed with over 42 teams around the world and got selected for the Semifinals by remaining within the top 10 position. They were awarded as "Outstanding Rookie Team" award from the Robosub 2022.
Srijan Banik a student studying in the 12th semester of Computer Science and Engineering department. He is a Millennium Fellow at UN Academic Impact and he led the very first cohort of millennium fellows at BRACU as its Campus Director. He has been actively working on advancing SDG 3 13 and 17 with his Start-up KriShop and Civic Engagement project Alokdhenu.
Yeamin of the Department of Computer Science and Engineering who graduated from the department of CSE at BRAC University and currently working at Grameenphone as a Management Trainee. RobiDatathon 2.0 is the largest hackathon in Bangladesh for data enthusiasts in which Yeamin’s team “Viking Raiders” of BRAC University secured the second runner-up position and Yeamin has won the “Top Data Engineer” award individually.
The orientation program included a fair of BRAC University’s student clubs, a cultural performance and a concert.