Vice Chancellor’s speech to New Students of Oceanography on 03 January 2017
In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful,
Dean (FEOS), Treasurer, senior Officers, academic advisor, heads of departments, academic and support staff, parents and guardians, and more important, our new students. Assalamualykum and good morning.
Let me begin my talks by paying tributes to, the greatest of all Bangalees of all time, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, and the valiant freedom fighters who sacrificed their valuable lives in the liberation war for the independence of this country.
Dear new students,
You are finally here! We have been eagerly waiting and preparing for your arrival. A very warm welcome to you.
Congratulations for getting admission at Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Maritime University, Bangladesh.
You have been chosen out of many applicants who were competing for a very limited number of places! Congratulations also on performing well enough in your HSC and other school leaving qualification.
Our university is the first ever specialized university of the country on maritime sector. You have chosen to study at a very special and distinctive university which has a definitive vision and mission and named after the father of the nation. The university was established by law of the government in October 2013. The decision for establishing a maritime university has been taken by the present government headed by the honourable prime minister Sheikh Hasina, after her government won the historic verdict on maritime boundary delimitation at international court of justice. This has added new dimension to the ‘well- talked -about -blue
economy’, which is so much important for a country like ours having small land mass with huge population. Here we are to fulfill the dream of the father of the nation, to make Bangladesh poverty- free, ‘Shonar Bangla’
We have our motto ‘’we strive for maritime excellence”. This excellence is aimed towards greater interest of the nation in general. This should motivate us to prepare ourselves to make the best use of the huge ocean frontier along with all associated supports at land and sea. Our area at sea having EEZ is about 118000 square kms. We should not only focus on this limited area but look at the open sea and beyond. Learn how great nations have been benefitted out of sea resources.
There are not many maritime universities around the globe. This is the third public maritime university of the subcontinent. We have already signed Memorandum of Understanding with five foreign maritime universities of the world. I think you are very lucky. You should be a proud member of the maritime community as a young student.
Dear students, I think you have chosen very well indeed! Oceanography is a vast subject. So far nobody in the country has obtained a bachelor degree on the subject. As the subject covers a wide range of oceanic science, I suppose opportunities will be also vast as far as your future career is concerned. Bangladesh government is giving lot importance on this maritime sector. New research institutions are being opened at national level and maritime industries are growing in numbers and size.
As you join this special community you need to know and understand what its purposes and core values are. We are here to build a large community of scholars to engage in the generation, dissemination and application of knowledge. Our university exists to serve some core purposes:
Our first purpose is to produce and disseminate knowledge through all kinds of research, creative endeavours so that we can advance the frontiers of knowledge, human understanding and wisdom.
Our second purpose is to teach in ways which allow and encourage our students to engage critically with knowledge and its production. I expect future graduates will not just see our society or the world as it is but can imagine a better society and a better world and act with courage and conviction to change our society and the world in positive direction.
Dear Young Learners
Your enrolling at Maritime University marks the beginning of your lifetime association with this University. Your time at Maritime University will be one of the freest and most exciting in your life. It is an opportunity to discover who you are and what your passion is. Be sure to find your passion and pursue it with dedication and commitment. Be a person with positive attitude. Try to find an opportunity at every odd you face in life. This will exercise you to be more creative and give more confidence to meet future real life challenges.
This is a time of transition; a time of adjustment, and a time of change. J K Rowling of the Harry Potter fantasy series: that there is an expiry date on blaming your parents for steering you in the wrong direction. That date for you is today. You must now take responsibility for your future and all that you do. University life is a time for learning and self-discovery.
University education is, by its very nature, trans-formative. You can only experience immense personal transformation and enlightenment, if you keep an open mind.
We want you to use the power of reasoned argument, to develop the ability and capacity to analyse, to reason with evidence, to reflect and argue using knowledge. We want you to develop the ability and skill to question; the power to question is the basis of all human progress.
We want you to improve your language skill right from the beginning. Remember by law of the university our teaching media is English. So try to practice your language skill both individually and in group. We want you to learn to communicate with clarity and effectiveness both orally and in writing. We want you to raise your standard to international level.
We value and treasure your individuality. We appreciate different ways of thinking, different ways of seeing and expressing.
My dear students,
I have several messages for you. Please remember these.
First, every person at BSMRMU must be treated with respect and dignity. It does not matter what social status a person occupies – whether one is a cleaner/ Janitor, a lab technician, a cook, or a distinguished professor – they deserve to be treated with respect and dignity. University will not tolerate any form of initiation. Treating another person in a demeaning and dehumanizing manner has no place at this University. We would encourage you to develop human qualities. So that others can say that you all are good human.
Second, BSMRMU will not tolerate racist, any form of bigotry or stubbornness, prejudice, any sort of hostile behaviour.
Third, Use or irresponsible consumption of any sort of drug, narcotics and experimentation with drugs will not be tolerated at BSMRMU. Such behavior will impair your ability to assess a situation and will make you vulnerable to crime.
Fourth, as a young adult with great independence and freedom you must now rely on your own wisdom and inner strength to guide yourself. As a university community, we are against all sorts of unsocial and terrorist activities. Crime is a sad reality in our society. It is seen that campuses are often targeted by misguided people. We ask you to be very vigilant/alert wherever you are. Trust your instinct and act appropriately. Our University Protection Services are there to provide protection to the students, staff and property.
Fifth, studying for a BSMRMU degree will be demanding. You must take your academic works very seriously. Work and study hard, if you don’t perform and meet our academic requirements, you will get a warning and the consequences are serious. You must remember this is a public university where your tuition fees are not enough to run these activities of higher education. Major share of the assets comes from the tax payers’ contribution, which are accountable.
We shall have our Institutional Quality Assessment Cell to monitor your and faculties progress as we would move on. In short, never lose sight of what you are here for. Should you experience difficulties though, be assured that our academic and support staff are there to support you. We have senior professor, Course teacher to advise you, if required. You can always call on our competent and capable professional staff to help you with a variety of personal challenges. Taking your life is never an answer! Do not suffer in silence. Please seek help.
Dear parents and guardians…
Some of you will probably experience a set of complex and conflicting emotions. On the one hand, you will be excited that your loved one is finally at university and, on the other; you will experience the pain of letting go. You may be wondering if your son or daughter will keep the values and principles that you tried so hard to instill in him or her. You may wonder, if he or she is ready for this important step of self discovery. Have no fear. Know that they are at an outstanding university, that we will do our best to see to their needs and problems, that they will have a wonderful academic and social experience, and will develop intellectually and personally.
Your loved one needs to develop and grow in order to discover who he or she is and what he or she can become. He/She needs to make his/her own decisions and choices. Do offer advice, support and love to him or her.
However give him or her space, time and freedom to explore and solve his or her own problems. If some problems persist, get in touch with us so our professional services can assist.
The next four years or so will be an exciting time for your lovely daughter or son. This will be a time of phenomenal intellectual, and personal growth and development for him or her.
Dear New Students
The subject oceanography is a relatively new field in Bangladesh where you will have wide opportunity to work on wider horizon of knowledge. After graduation you should have scope to work on different areas. Apart from self employment your employment opportunities should be at many fields say, to research institutes, universities, maritime institutions and industries, oil and gas industries, aquacultures, oceanographic institutes, environmental agencies, regulatory bodies under different concerned ministries and other fields.
In conclusion, I wish to acknowledge with thanks a deep appreciation to our concerned Dean, Registrar, and their teams for managing the application and admission processes with utmost professionalism. We wish all parents, guardians, or relatives a safe trip back home. Thank you very much. Allah hafez.