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OWSD Bangladesh National Chapter Meeting with Engineering Students’ Association of Bangladesh (ESAB)

August 25, 2020





On June 25, 2020, executive committee members of Bangladesh National Chapter had a zoom meeting with representatives of ESAB, the largest students’ association of engineers in Bangladesh.

This was a follow-up of the request made by information and communication officer of ESAB, Ms Shaguffta Rahman on 19 June, 2020; who had contacted OWSD secretariat in Italy with an interest/proposal to have a partnership with Bangladesh National Chapter.  Ms Fiona Dakin of the Secretariat forwarded the communication to Chair and Secretary of Bangladesh NC and Dr Sharmin Parveen, Chair of Bangladesh national chapter immediately circulate the matter among ExCom members and organized a zoom meeting in the following week. 

The meeting lasted for 2 hours, where OWSDBDNC and ESAB members exchanged their views and opinions on the role they are playing and how both organization can benefit each other through co-operation. OWSDNCBD EC member’s viz. Dr Sharmin Parveen (Chair), Dr Tabassum Mumtaz (Secretary), Dr. Afsana Ansari (Organizing Secretary), Nupur Karmaker (Joint Secretary), Dr Shahanaz Choudhury (ECM), Dr Mithila Faruque (ECM), Dr Farzana Ashrafi Neela (ECM), Dr Rubaiyat Yasmin (ECM) joined this webinar.  Engineering Student's Association of Bangladesh (ESAB) was represented by Tasnim Ahmed Mahin (Advisor), Md. Arif Raihan (President), Proma Prodipti (member) and Shaguffta Rahman (Info & Communication officer).

The meeting commenced after brief introduction of 12 participants and was coordinated by chair, Dr Sharmin. Dr Sharmin thanked Ms Shaguffta for initiating this collaboration and briefed ESAB representatives on OWSD and activities of OWSD national chapter in Bangladesh. It is interesting to note that ESAB, being the only government-affiliated nonprofit volunteer organization, plays a vital role in encouraging and promoting women engineers for their participation in both public and private sector. OWSD, on the other hand, is dedicated to promote female postgrads and professionals in STEM, through mentoring, fellowships and awards for the past 27 years. There is an obvious similarity in the aims of both organizations which may allow them to make collaboration in terms of strategic guidance, technical guidance or to fulfill any other mutual goals.

The advisor of ESAB, Mr Md Arif Raihan elaborated the activities of ESAB from its inception and explained how it grew up into a huge association with over 10,000 members over the time. From the presentation of Mr Arif as well as ESAB president Mr Tasnim Ahmed Mahin, it was very clear about the goals and achievements of ESAB in bringing up new technologies to students and to stay as a common platform for all engineering students of the country. Some of their Revolutionary Engineering Initiatives e.g., National Robotech Festival was the Biggest Robotics, Rover, AI and Tech Event of Bangladesh. Power and Energy Hackathon, ESAB Innovation Center (EIC) and Techfest were some of their unique and remarkable activities in the past few years.

The Secretary of OWSDBDNC, Dr. Tabassum Mumtaz, presented the history, aims and schemes of OWSD and the recent activities of Bangladesh chapter in her short power point presentation. She mentioned about some of the opportunities that any female postgrad or professionals can grab e.g., PhD fellowships, Early Career Women fellowship for research grants and OWSD-Elsevier Foundation awards. She gave examples of PhD fellows and mentioned Dr Hasibun Naher, Dr. Tanzima Hashem and Dr Samia Subrina - recent awardees from Bangladesh. She encouraged the ESAB representatives to join OWSD.

Ms Shaguffta Rahman of ESAB told how they are ensuring participation of women engineers in their association. They are trying to encourage them in different ways either by giving them more chances in attending competitions, workshops, seminars and/or reducing their membership fees in certain cases. In this way, they have been able to maximize women’s engagement and boost up their interest level. 

During the open discussion session, the topic that came first was the job crisis faced by engineers, in particular. Dr Sharmin shared her experience in this regard and mentioned the challenges faced by engineers in health science and IT sector. Prof. Dr Farzana questioned on the job aspects of biomedical engineers and also acknowledged the role of biomedical engineers in this current Corona Pandemic. Dr Rubaiyat shared her own experience as Information and Communication Engineer and expressed her interest to work closely with ESAB. Dr. Afsana also pointed out the job market scenario of engineers in Bangladesh context and welcome the effort ESAB is putting to balance the situation.

Ms Nupur mentioned the pioneer role her Dept. of Medical Physics and Biomedical Engineering (MPBME) at Gono Bishwabidyalay (University) have played in introducing medical physics and biomedical engineering in this country. They have been extended their support in this field for different health challenges in Bangladesh since then. She wished to extend her expertise and worked together with ESAB in this regard. Dr Mithila Faruque congratulated both ESAB and national chapter representatives for this wonderful initiatives.

Dr Sharmin appreciated friendly discussion and interactive session with ESAB representatives and hoped to work together for future development. At the end of the program, she thanked all participants for their active participation and wished everyone a safe and healthy life.

Prepared by Dr Tabassum Mumtaz, Secreatry, OWSD BDNC and Ms Nupur Karmaker, Joint Secretary, OWSDBDNC


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