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Sharjah Ruler shares research and development plans at AUS Fall 2015 commencement
"AUS continues its distinction year after year, making solid strides towards leadership, not only in the field of higher education, but also in research and development," said His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultan Bin Mohammad Al Qassimi, Supreme Council Member, Ruler of Sharjah, and President of American University of Sharjah (AUS), at the AUS Fall 2015 graduation ceremony held today, January 23, at University City Hall, Sharjah. The ceremony was also attended by His Excellency Sheikh Sultan Bin Mohammed Bin Sultan Al Qassimi, Crown Prince and Deputy Ruler of Sharjah.
A total of 565 undergraduate and graduate candidates participated in the Fall 2015 commencement ceremony.
As he congratulated the Class of Fall 2015, His Highness the Ruler of Sharjah said in his opening speech, "Your graduation today from AUS opens before you wide horizons towards entering a successful practical life for furthering your education. I ask you to use what you have learned to serve your nation and communities."
His Highness also shared the university's plans to become a hub for research and development. "We have clearly drawn the future path of the university, and we are on the right track to achieve these objectives. AUS has succeeded in developing an integrated system that provides excellence in advanced university education and, at the same time, strives to become a hub for research and development on the local, regional and international levels."
"In addition to motivating students and faculty to achieve distinction in the field of research by providing them with the necessary time and moral and financial support, the university is also paving the way to provide a proper environment for mutual cooperation with international institutions that would utilize the research potential of the university in a fruitful partnership," added His Highness.
To realize this vision and to support a knowledge-based economy, the Sharjah Ruler explained the recent launch of AUS Enterprises established to develop commercial activities with the aim to strengthen the endowment and financial resources of AUS. "This includes the management and the execution of investment projects that support the university and its strategic initiatives," said Sheikh Dr. Sultan.
He concluded his speech by thanking members of the Broad of Trustees, the faculty members and the university's administration for their sincere efforts and their contributions in developing this university.
During his opening remarks, AUS Chancellor Dr. Björn Kjerfve said, "Graduation Day is an important occasion for us as a university, as it gives us the opportunity to celebrate the success and achievements of our students. Today, 565 of our brightest will be making their way into the marketplace, equipped with the skills and knowledge learned during their years at AUS. These qualifications will stand them in good stead and help them make a successful start in their careers."
Addressing the graduates, the Chancellor said, "Today's world is becoming increasingly competitive. With distances in all compartments of life reducing at a rapid pace, the global marketplace has become an arena where individuals, organizations and ideas come together to compete, forge links and form partnerships. AUS is arguably the best university in the country, and we aim for excellence in all areas of academic endeavors.
The Chancellor then talked of AUS Enterprises, which is being set up to develop commercial activities to generate revenue for the university. "AUS Enterprises will play an integral role in creating synergy between AUS, its faculty and students, and the many corporate and research organizations to be located in the Research, Technology and Innovation (RTI) Park. These and other related activities conducted in the realms of industry and academia will not only raise the university's profile but will, more significantly, contribute towards the reputation of the Emirate of Sharjah as an education, research and R&D MENA hub."
"Graduates, you are now among 11,118 AUS alumni across the globe. Your alma mater will always be proud of you and your success. You are a vital part of the AUS family and as such I encourage you to keep in touch with AUS and pledge scholarships or other support to those AUS students who will come after you," concluded Chancellor Kjerfve.
The breakdown of the graduates is as follows:
Total number of graduating students: 565
Number of undergraduate students receiving degrees: 494
Number of graduate students receiving degrees: 71
Number of male graduates: 308
Number of female graduates: 257
Total number of UAE nationals graduating: 113
A breakdown of the graduating class by college/school is as follows:
College of Architecture, Art and Design: 23 undergraduate and 9 graduate
College of Arts and Sciences: 74 undergraduate and 10 graduate
College of Engineering: 227 undergraduate and 29 graduate
School of Business Administration: 170 undergraduate and 23 graduate
The student speaker at the ceremony, Christian Chibuzor Momah, began by expressing his gratitude to His Highness and said, "We are really grateful to God that your vision gave birth to a university such as ours. Your vision has allowed us to benefit from the remarkable transformation that the educational experience at AUS offered."
Momah, who graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering, addressed his peers and said, "Nearly all of us graduating today understand the feeling of being a naïve first-year student. As freshmen, we had little or no experience on how to study at university. Socially, some of us were just too timid about life. Today, years of self-discovery, experimenting and learning, have allowed us to develop a greater level of self-confidence and awareness. We have benefitted enormously from the academic and non-academic learning experiences at AUS, and have gained very valuable skills."
He concluded his speech by saying, "Last but not least, let us think big and exceed the limit that is set before you. I urge you to take your skills and knowledge to greater levels. Learning is done every day outside the classroom. Do not settle for mediocrity, but seek continuous refinement in knowledge and character."
Founded in 1997, AUS has fulfilled His Highness Dr. Sheikh Sultan's vision of a quality institution catering to the aspirations and needs of the UAE and the wider Gulf community as a whole. Over the past decade, the student body increased considerably, necessitating the launch of two graduation ceremonies per year.