By Siti Hajar, BB 1 Oct 2010
Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD) was reminded by His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam that more still needs to be done to ensure that the higher education institution will one day achieve international standards.
His Majesty delivered a titah at UBD’s 22nd Convocation, which saw 1,114 graduates receiving their educational credentials at the institution’s Chancellor Hall. This year, UBD has successfully produced two PhD Graduates; 67 Master’s Graduates; 720 Degree Graduates and 325 Post Graduate diplomas.
“If UBD aspires to achieve global status, quality research, publication, education and teaching should be on par with worlds’ leading universities,” said His Majesty adding, “One development that we can be proud of is the introduction by my government of the competitive “Graduate Research Scholarship Scheme” that will enable UBD to attract local and foreign graduates to do their post graduate programmes at UBD.
Highlighting UBD’s successful collaboration with internationally renowned IBM in establishing the UBD-IBM Centre that aims to improve research quality in UBD, the monarch said, “Diversity in research and improvements are still needed” and expressed his hope that efforts taken thus far could generate interest among government and private bodies to “collaborate in producing excellent researches”.
Pointing that UBD this year celebrates its Silver Jubilee, His Majesty highlighted accomplishments that have been made over the past two-and-a-half decades by noting the institution’s significant strides in the development of several key areas including fields relating to human resources, educational landscape, improvements in research, as well as infrastructure growth.
UBD has already produced approximately 14,000 graduates.
“This is a significant portion among the nation’s population,” His Majesty said and added that UBD has become the “choice university”.
His Majesty said that apart from excelling academically, it is heartwarming to know that UBD graduates have also done well in co-curriculum activities as proven by their involvement in representing the nation in various national and international competitions including sports, public speaking, mechanical creations and al-Quran recitals.
“These involvements are important in developing holistic individuals,” His Majesty stated.
His Majesty called for their contribution to the country’s growth and encouraged them to “face any challenge – be it on a national or global scale”.
Meanwhile, as UBD awarded the last batch of graduates from Sultan Haji Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Institute for Islamic Studies, His Majesty announced that Islamic Studies in UBD will now be imparted under Sultan Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Centre for Islamic Studies, which will offer postgraduate and research programmes which can, hopefully, “also produce Islamic experts who can analyse current issues based on an Islamic perspective”.
His Majesty said that since UBD’s establishment, Islamic studies have become the core of the organisation’s structure and its programmes.
Prior to thanking dedicated educators for their unwavering contribution and services, His Majesty congratulated yesterday’s graduates and said: “May your progress continue.”