Orientation ceremony for September 2019 at the American International University, West Africa

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By Mafugi Ceesay

The traditional orientation ceremony for new intakes at the American International University, West Africa (AIUWA) took place on Thursday 12th September 2019 at the AIUWA Health Sciences campus in Kanifing Institutional Layout.

AIUWA conducted the ceremony for over 120 new students in the areas of Medicine, Pharmacy, Nursing, Accounting & Finance, Business Administration, Human Resources, and Computer Science and Technology.

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The new students came from different parts of the world some of which are The Gambia, USA, Nigeria, Cameroon, Sierra Leone and Liberia.

AIUWA is an accredited institution of higher learning founded by Dinesh Shukla, the Chancellor of the university and an American citizen who first came to The Gambia about 8 years ago with the sole intention to bring quality and affordable US education to the doorstep of people living in Africa and beyond.

The vision of AIUWA is to provide a well-rounded education to prepare students to excel in their field of specialization.

In his welcoming remarks, Dinesh Shukla emphasized on the role of universities: “in university education there is no way that we can teach you everything but you are expected to know everything.

So how can you achieve this? By attending every lectures, seminars, practicals, clinical postings and most importantly undertake self-directed learning.”

To be successful in university education, students are expected to spend long times in the library and read widely on their subject areas.

He implored on the students to excel well in their various fields of specialty – they are the ambassadors of AIUWA, they are the leaders of tomorrow and they should never underestimate their ability and power to excel.

He thanked the faculty and administration for their efforts in bringing AIUWA to this world-class level and also the students for choosing to study at AIUWA. He concluded by wishing them successful stay at the university.

The Vice Chancellor, Dr Makie Taal welcomed the new students and congratulated them for having secured their university place and for having the good sense of choosing to study at AIUWA. He went further to state that AIUWA puts students at the centre of everything it does; hence their experience at AIUWA and most importantly their success is of key importance to each and every member of staff who works there ranging from the security, the cleaners, the administrative, faculty staff, himself to the Chancellor of the University.

The Vice Chancellor described the latest chapter in the new students’ lives as being somehow a bit different from their previous chapters. The chapters preceding this one were largely authored by others – example their parents, guardians, families, friends, teachers and the like. In this new chapter starting today, they will now be the principal author – in that they have the opportunity to determine the direction, the plot and the tempo of their story.
“They have chosen to study at AIUWA and can subsequently ask themselves this important question: how can I make this chapter of my life successful?” He then deliberated over three important piece of advice for them: take responsibility for their learning, make the most of their time at AIUWA and to embrace difference.

The Registrar of AIUWA, Prabodh Shukla also welcomed the new students and dilated on the responsibility of the staff, both academic and non-academic to the students that are geared towards their success during their time at AIUWA.

A current student, Miracle Ogbonna who had passed USMLE (US Medical Licensure Examinations) 1 & 2 with 99% score gave the new students good tips on how to excel during their studies at AIUWA and pass their exams.

During the ceremony, the University presented her with a D20,000 prize money for her tremendous achievements throughout her stay at AIUWA.

The orientation ceremony was attended by dignitaries, partners of AIUWA, student’s family and faculty members.

Other speakers included the Provost of the College of Medicine and Health Sciences, Dr Abubacar Jah who gave good advice to the new students on how to become successful at AIUWA. He implored the students to take full responsibility of their destiny.

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