| Siti Hajar |
THE new year is slated to witness exciting times for Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD) as the country’s oldest higher education institution gears up to welcome the conclusion of its 2015 Strategic Plan followed by its next five-year vision leading to the year 2020 with the end-goal being the year 2035.
In his welcoming address yesterday directed at the university’s latest semester intake for the academic year 2014/2015, Vice-Chancellor Dato Paduka Dr Haji Zulkarnain bin Haji Hanafi announced that the university is currently looking into shaping its Vision 2020 with a foundation based on UBD’s previous successes as well as lessons learnt, which will be utilised towards the implementation of a more effective education system.
The formation of the university’s next strategic plan, he explained, will involve consultation sessions with internal and external shareholders with the focus on strengthening and introducing benchmarks based on international best practices as well as scanning for potential opportunities with the consideration of an uncertain future, referring to the constant volatility of the current global atmosphere.
“The future requires us to be more creative, to be thinking entrepreneurially, opportunity-driven and to work with a sense of urgency,” he said, and emphasising that “because UBD is our university, each and every one of us has a role to play in the shaping of Vision 2020”.
With reference to His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam’s 2015 New Year titah, the vice-chancellor stressed that the country’s future rests on the shoulders of its younger population, with emphasis on their intellectual capital and urged this semester’s new intake to join the ranks of those who will influence “transformational change” as in line with UBD’s GenNext mission towards the development of the nation’s economy.
For the over 500 new students including 41 international students, the next four years under the guidance of UBD seek to change them and the way they see the world through creative understanding across a number of different faculties that hosts programmes that will aims to prepare students for the future as they enter the world of employment.
“Creative thinking may necessitate you to look at a problem from an unorthodox perspective, to think beyond the obvious, sometimes in a less structured manner, to think outside the box, or better still, think without any boxes.”
The vice-chancellor reminded the students to be responsible and disciplined with their work while remaining conscientious, which he believes will enable each and every student to realise their full potential, to pursue productive careers.