AUW Celebrates Bangladesh’s Independence Day and Graduation of the Class of 2020
Posted on December 16, 2020
Written by Kiko
Asian University for Women (AUW) joined people across all walks of life in Bangladesh to celebrate the country’s 49th Independence Day and honor the graduates of AUW’s Class of 2020 through a virtual program. Henrietta Fore, Executive Director of UNICEF and Rubana Huq, AUW Trustee & President of the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association spoke as Commencement Speakers. Sadeka Begum, a former garment factory worker, spoke as the Class Valedictorian alongside the University’s Chancellor Mrs. Cherie Blair; Chairman of the Board of Trustees and Bangladesh’s Education Minister Dr. Dipu Moni; Vice Chancellor Nirmala Rao; and AUW Founder Kamal Ahmad. The Class of 2020 included the first group of students recruited from among the workers in garment factories in Bangladesh to graduate with a bachelor’s degree following a two-year on-campus preparatory course and then matriculating into the undergraduate program.
Asian University for Women is an international, liberal arts and sciences university in Chittagong, Bangladesh. Its sole purpose is to educate and empower the future female leaders of Asia and the Middle East. In its recruitment, AUW exercises a preferential option for women from historically marginalized and underserved communities, including refugees, garments workers, women from conflict areas, and daughter of tea estate workers. Almost 900 women are currently enrolled at the University, and over 1,000 have graduated. The majority of graduates return to their home countries to work in governments, non-profits, and corporations, making a positive change in their communities. About 25% of graduates pursue graduate school at institutions including Cambridge, Brandeis, Johns Hopkins, and New York University.