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December 3, 2018

IBA awards degrees to largest graduating batch of its history

Karachi

December 3, 2018

As many as 926 graduates of the Institute of Business Administration (IBA), who form the largest graduating batch of the institute in the 63 years of its entire history, were conferred upon degrees on Saturday during the 2018 IBA convocation.

The convocation ceremony was held at the main campus of the institute. The graduating students included 664 from six undergraduate programmes, 261 from eight post-graduate students programs, and one PhD scholar.

The chief guest of the ceremony was Adviser to the Prime Minister on Institutional Reforms and Austerity Dr Ishrat Husain who also earlier served as the dean of the institute. Addressing the ceremony, IBA Executive Director Dr. Farrukh Iqbal congratulated the graduating students and their families. The IBA has long had a good reputation for imparting high quality education, he said, adding that the institute had maintained its reputation over the years by being selective in granting admissions, offering high quality education in a disciplined atmosphere and holding examinations that were characterised by integrity.

Dr Iqbal also acknowledged the contributions of the past graduates of the IBA in their respective fields which helped maintain the institution’s reputation. The IBA executive director maintained that it was due to the high quality education being offered at the institute that the IBA students were offered attractive salaries upon graduation.

“Over the past five years, salary offers received by our BBA and MBA graduates have risen by 25 per cent while those received by our computer science graduates have risen by 11 per cent,” Dr Iqbal said.

He, however, clarified that grades and salaries were not all that was important in life. Service to the community is also important, he said and asserted that many educationists feel that one of the principal purposes of acquiring knowledge is to serve society.

“IBA plays its part in inculcating the sense of public responsibility by [its] Responsible Citizen requirement,” Dr Iqbal said, explaining that under the requirement, each and every student was supposed to complete a social internship during his or her time at the Institute.

“All of the graduating students have to be familiar with the service aspect of the IBA. This was illustrated most clearly by our Responsible Citizen requirement that each and every student complete a social internship during his or her passage through the institute.

This internship exposes students to such social concerns as poverty, hunger, illness, illiteracy, disability, discrimination, homelessness, orphanhood and the loss of dignity. The service aspect is also illustrated by the orientation of some of the student clubs we have at the institute, such as those that focus on community welfare or on environmental concerns,” he said.

Talking about the rigorous criterion for the selection of students in the admissions process, the IBA executive director said in 2014, the BS SS class of 121 students was selected from 579 applicants, which meant only one in every five applicants was enrolled.

Dr Iqbal informed the gathering that during the 2014 admissions for BBA programme at the IBA, a total of 3,336 candidates had applied for the admission and only 211 students were selected.

The chief guest lauded the progress IBA had achieved in the last decade and said, “I get feedback from the market that IBA graduates are distinguished not only on merit, but they also exhibit highest ethical values in their conduct.”

Dr Husain urged the graduates to show compassion towards their fellow beings. “Prepare yourself for an uncertain future. The knowledge and skills you have acquired would soon become obsolete and outdated. Only those among you who are continuously recharging their mental batteries and reequipping themselves with new tools are likely to succeed,” he advised the students.

A large number of IBA graduates have been shortlisted in the most recent round of the selection of the chief executives of banks and commissioners of the Securities and Exchange Commission, Dr Husain claimed. “I am quite sanguine that in times to come the shortlisted potential candidates for top positions in the country would emanate largely from among those IBA graduates who strive to work hard, honestly and to the best of their ability,” he said.

“When I look back at 2008 and compare it with 2018, I am simply amazed. The achievements are too many to be enumerated on this occasion,” Dr Husain remarked. The chief guest congratulated the graduating students for their perseverance and dedicated efforts. “It is a testimony to your strive for excellence. You now enter a selected galaxy of the top-notch professionals of this country. Whether you choose to become an entrepreneur or get employed in public or private or nonprofit sectors, I am sure you would acquit yourselves admirably well,” he said.

Dr Husain also congratulated parents of the graduating students, saying that their anxieties and concerns were finally coming to an end. “Parents have made enormous sacrifices to see this day and I want to thank them profusely for their determination. I also wish to thank the faculty members and staff of the IBA who have enabled these students to cross this important hurdle in their lives”.

The convocation proceeded by conferment of the degrees. The position holders were also presented cash prizes, medals, shields and certificates of merit. It was also the first time the institute gave shields for excellence in sports.

Performance awards were given to staff and faculty including the Best Teacher and Best Researcher award. A few of the medals and awards were sponsored by the corporate sector and philanthropists.

Medallists

Sehar Salman Adil, a gold medalist MBA graduate, said acquiring education at the IBA had improved her perspective on how the proper business administration could help one grow their career. Patience is key to success, she said.

Another gold medalist graduate in MS computer science, Amna Iftikhar said, “Although this programme was highly competitive, it helped me shape as a better person. I’m also working as a lecturer at Bahria University. So this program taught me how to face cutthroat challenges.”

Muhammad Adil Saleem who secured the second position in the MS computer science programme thanked his parents and teachers for the success he had achieved. “I am very thankful for my alma mater to help me achieve this monumental milestone,” he said.

Zara Hussaini, a gold medalist graduate in the BS computer science progamme, said the convocation was a proud day for her. "I am confident about my professional career and employment prospects,” she said, adding that she had made her parents proud being an IBA graduate.

Rafiq Lightwala, a senior brand manager at Colgate who bagged the second position in the MBA programme, said he underwent a transformation at the IBA. “The programme changed my entire outlook on life.”

The only doctorate student who was awarded a PhD degree at the convocation was Shama Siddiqui. “I’m honored to receive my degree from Dr Ishrat Husain. The IBA has nurtured me and inculcated good research skills in me. This was a really long journey as every PhD expects. But looking back I realise all the hardships were worth it,” she remarked.

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