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Almost ninety different nationalities make up AUS student body, says Chancellor at Orientation
AUS provides a cosmopolitan atmosphere with almost 90 different nationalities comprising the student body, stated AUS Chancellor Dr. Peter Heath at a special welcome session held recently for new students and their parents at the AUS Main Auditorium. The welcome session, marking the official launch of the orientation week starting today until Thursday, aimed to give new students a comprehensive understanding of the university and to acclimate them to life at AUS.
Dr. Heath congratulated the new students at the event, and welcomed them on behalf of the university's founder and president, His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Mohammad Al Qassimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah. "You should know that it is quite normal that each of you now feels very excited about entering university, but that you may also feel a little worried or anxious. Everyone at AUS is here to help you overcome these initial moments of anxiety. Please help each other do so by being friendly and helpful to one another. You are classmates now, so take care of each other and make each other feel comfortable," said the Chancellor.
The welcome session was conducted by Ali Shuhaimy, Vice Chancellor for Enrollment Management, who addressed the students, their parents and guests individually, welcoming them to AUS. "Those of you in this room represent the top 20 percent of high school graduates, and this is proof of your ability and your desire to continue your success and distinction. AUS is ready to exert its best to help you achieve your goals," said Shuhaimy to the students. He also thanked the parents for the confidence they had shown by choosing AUS.
Also speaking at the session was Dr. Thomas Hochstettler, AUS Provost. "I predict that during your next few years at AUS, you will forge friendships that will endure throughout your lifetimes," said Dr. Hochstettler. "Here you will expand your horizons and challenge your assumptions about the world, about how it functions and about your place in it. Here you will find the resources to build for yourselves a life rich with complexity and forever open to exploring new perspectives on the world. Here, if you apply yourselves, you will gain the skills and intellectual tools that will allow you to succeed in your careers after graduation," he added.
The welcome session gave new students an insight on the cultural and social life at AUS as a campus community. Luis Abd Al-Rahman Garcia, President of the AUS Student Council, also shared some personal experiences with the students. He also encouraged them to seek the help of the Student Council. "We are the executive authority that has the duty of harboring students' rights, representing the students' interests, acting as a forum and voice for students' opinions, propositions, concerns, and ideas, nurturing students' welfare in all fields, solving the students' problems efficiently, and many other tasks. It is extremely important for us that you know you are not alone. We are here for you," he said.
In an effort to emphasize the importance of academic integrity, new students were asked to sign the Academic Integrity Pledge which binds them to uphold the highest standards of honesty and to adhere to the rules of the university, thereby creating a culture of integrity.
Also present at the event were AUS vice chancellors as well as deans and other senior university officials.