In different countries, private universities get support from local governments in building infrastructures. Here, such institutions for higher studies depend solely on students' tuition fees for everything.
Yet, United International University (UIU) is proud of the largest green campus it has in Dhaka city, generously offers scholarships and dreams bigger in the fields of higher studies, says Professor Dr Md. Abul Kashem Mia, vice-chancellor (in charge) of the university, in an interview with The Business Standard.
What is the vision of your university?
United International University (UIU), started its journey in October 2003 under the patronage of United Group with only 76 students. UIU's Vision is to become a center of excellence in teaching and research in the South Asian region.
Do you think you have reach your goal following your vision?
We are moving forward according to our vision. UIU is working with the commitment to develop the students of this country as skilled and capable citizens to face the challenges of the 4th industrial revolution.
What is achievement of the university till now?
Since its inception, UIU has been striving to improve the quality of higher education in the country in a different way. UIU has been consistently ranked as one of the top private universities in Bangladesh in the QS Asia University Rankings from 2019 to 2023. In THE IMPACT Rankings it has been placed from 2020 to 2022 in the world in the SDG-1 category.
UIU Business School is accredited by the globally renowned US based ACBSP. UIU has achieved this accreditation unconditionally for 10 years. Its BBA in AIS program is CIMA accredited. CSE and EEE programs under School of Science and Engineering are accredited by the Institution of Engineers, Bangladesh (IEB).
What is the specialty of your university?
Maintaining transparency, accountability and integrity in every activity of UIU is a unique feature of this university. One of the hallmarks of this university is to maintain transparency, honesty and accountability in student admissions, faculty, staff recruitment and promotion, educational programs and evaluation, financial management, keeping promises made to students-parents and recruiters and other overall activities.
Do you have any initiative to link the graduates to the industry?
We always produce graduates as per market oriented skills and demand. The syllabus of all our subjects are prepared timely and modified according to industry needs. In the curriculum committee, representatives from the respective industries always give their feedback and we modify the syllabus accordingly.
Why the students will chose your university for admission?
The campus has a large playground of 20 bighas of land with lush green open spaces for outdoor recreation. It has the largest green campus in Dhaka city. UIU has scholarships or special facilities for meritorious and financially insolvent students. Also in this university, 25% to 100% scholarship is given to 15% of students based on semester results and interest free loans are available as per the needs of the students.
What challenges ahead do you see?
Our biggest challenge is funding. We are totally dependent on student tuition fees. In foreign countries, local governments help private universities build infrastructure but in our country the picture is opposite. Private universities are moving forward through various obstacles.
What is the future plan of the university?
To develop UIU as one of the higher education institutions in the field of education and research in Bangladesh and also in the South Asian region.
Do you think that education migration can be reduced by the existing education system at private universities?
Please recall the situation in early 90's, when the private universities started to grow. At that time thousands of students migrated to different countries since they could not enrol in public universities with limited seat capacities.
Currently, the quality of education in some private universities is very good. So, I think that the education migration can be reduced by strengthening the education system at private universities.