(MENAFN- Khaleej Times)
Published: Sun 29 Jan 2023, 5:36 PM
His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, attended on Saturday the annual ceremony of the American University of Sharjah Alumni Association, which was held in conjunction with the university's silver jubilee celebrations.
His Highness reviewed the university's journey from its beginnings, pointing out its the unlimited efforts, educational and administrative plans that were made to raise the academic level of the university.
'Today, this university completes a period that, according to many people, is like a blink of an eye – but in fact, this period has passed by building this university from nothing, to this level of perfection. This university did not progress and rise by chance, but rather by construction and diligence,' he said.
“God has helped us to establish this university on this site, and to set for it a high educational curriculum, qualified professors, and a council that runs this university, who are all one family”. His Highness referred to the administration's efforts in dealing with many issues and challenges that they made sure would not affect the university's goals and aspirations.
His Highness, who is also the President of the American University of Sharjah, extended his thanks and appreciation to everyone who has worked at the university, including professors, members of the Board of Trustees, and university administrators.
His Highness reviewed the dedication of the university's members, who have worked until it has reached the ranks of international research universities, by saying:“We do not remember 25 years as a fleeting memory, but rather as beautiful memories that [remember] everyone who dedicated [themselves] to reach 5 years of the university's life.
The Board of Trustees decided to develop a program for research studies, which required many things such as buildings, equipment, programs, and professors. We did not skimp [on this] and started working. The equipment and construction cost Dh267 million for the Research Center of the College of Engineering, and now this center is the eye of this university.Through it, we have reached serious research registered on behalf of the American University in the scientific community.'
His Highness recalled the beginnings of the establishment of the American University of Sharjah, and the great efforts that continued until it achieved great success, saying, '25 years ago , I started from this place (the site of the celebration). The first furnishing in the city was the American University, that was followed by the construction of many [other] institutions. I remembered that I had an umbrella to sit [with] and supervise the work that was going on, until this university was completed in less than 11 months.
Then, we succeeded with the beginning of the academic year, and we opened the College of Engineering [when] there were only 18 students in it. They advised me to postpone the [year] because the cost is high, but I told them that we will start even with one student; and, indeed, we started and completed the process, and thank God – now the College of Engineering includes the largest number of students in the university. We hope, God willing, that this path will continue in the same way.'
His Highness wished success to the graduates in their practical and scientific lives, wishing all new students success in completing their journey.
Dr. Susan Mumm, Chancellor of AUS, said that the Alumni Association ceremony this year has a special character, as it coincides with the celebration of the University's Silver Jubilee. The American University of Sharjah has seen more than 18,000 students successfully graduate – affirming that the university provides a distinguished educational experience that supports the success of the graduates, allowing them to continue and contribute to sciences, humanities, design, business, engineering, government work, and other fields.
The ceremony began with the national anthem of the United Arab Emirates, followed by recitation of verses from the Holy Quran, after which His Highness, the Ruler of Sharjah, pressed an electronic button marking the start of the ceremony.
His Highness then moved to the main stage of the ceremony, during which he witnessed a singing performance entitled 'Pearl, you are the refuge of the successful.' Then, Ali Lootah, President of the Alumni Association at the American University of Sharjah, delivered a speech in which he indicated that the university had completed its 25th year – during which it achieved great success based on the vision and leadership of His Highness the Ruler of Sharjah.
The audience were then shown a video show displaying the achievements of the university in the past years, in addition to video interviews of some former graduates who discussed their journey and success after studying at the university.
His Highness honoured a number of graduates in recognition of their various achievements in their fields in addition to their community contributions.
These included the winners of the University Award for Voluntary Services, and the winners of the Most Active Member of the University Alumni Council award. The names of the honourees were placed on the wall of the elite graduates of the American University in Sharjah for 2023.
His Highness also honoured the main supporters of the university, which are Alef Group, Arada Company, Bee'ah Company, Crescent Petroleum, Emaar, Etisalat, Petrofac, Sharjah Media City“Shams”, Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Invest in Sharjah, Sharjah Islamic Bank, and Sharjah National Oil Corporation, the Commerce and Tourism Development Authority, and Talabat Company.
At the end of the ceremony, His Highness received a commemorative shield from the President of the Alumni Association at the university. The shield bears Quranic verses designed by a number of the university's graduates.
On the sidelines of the ceremony, His Highness the Ruler of Sharjah inaugurated the 'Appreciation Garden', which is located on the university campus. It was designed by the university's graduate architects in honour of the valuable contributions of the university's friends, partners and alumni, and in support of the university's educational mission. His Highness signed a plaque that was designed at the entrance to the garden.
The dinner party was attended by His Highness the Ruler of Sharjah, Sheikh Saud bin Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Director of the Sharjah Digital Office; Sheikh Tariq bin Faisal Al Qasimi; Abdullah Sultan Al Owais, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Muhammad Obaid Al Zaabi, Head of the Protocol and Hospitality Department; Salem Youssef Al Qasir, Chairman of the Labour Standards Development Authority; Dr. Khaled Omar Al-Midfa, President of Sharjah Media City 'Shams', members of the University's Board of Trustees, faculty and administrative staff, and 3,500 graduate students.
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