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It's up to you!

It was the nationwide union of one of the world's largest student organization- AIESEC! AIESEC made the headlines in AIUB, IUB, BRAC and NSU newsletters for their recent four day National Leadership Developing Seminar (NLDS).

The NLDS was held in Manikganj Proshika HRDC. The AIESEC recruits teamed up for a wonderful experience away from the hustling bustling city life, slowly trained up to take on to life's challenges.

The intensive schedule meant no sleep for three nights and four days! Although the recruits (delegates) worked hard these four days, in between, the Organizing Committee of AIESEC made sure the delegates had their share of fun.

The whole AIESEC process was explained to the new recruits in extensive sessions and thus they had an insight of the organization they are going to work for.

AIESEC, in case you are still in the blue, is an international platform for young people to discover and develop their potential. It is a student organization run by students only. It was first introduced in NSU and now has spread to BRAC, IUB and AIUB. AIESEC is present in more than 95 countries in the world, with over 20,000 members consisting of undergraduate students and recent graduates. AIESEC is an exchange-based organization, which allows students to do foreign internships and thus have foreign exposure even before they graduate.

There have been exchanges to various AIESEC member countries like Japan, Canada, Germany, Netherlands, Singapore, Finland among others. Some examples, an NSU student went to Sweden for a nine-month internship, while two other girls went to Poland under a UNDP project. There have been other exchanges to Square informatics, Lalmai Group, and OISCA among others. AIESEC ensures fulltime positions in organizations abroad that are arranged and secured even before the trainee leaves his/her country (that is if his/her CV survives the intensive scrutiny of the AIESEC committee).

The would-be student trainees are then made to go through the invigorating AIESEC experience and in-depth cultural preparation before leaving the country so that the trainee can easily adapt to the foreign situations. AIESEC also provides leadership opportunities to potential students, and thus enabling them to be prepared for their future.

Real life situations are something that we hardly face bounded by the four walls of our University 'campus'. Marketing calls are something undergraduate students never get to do unless they are an AIESECer. We always have our parents to guide us you may say, but one of the NLDS delegate mentioned that the four-day trip was an eye-opener, “ For the first time I learnt how to completely depend on myself and myself alone.

I was responsible for everything- my personal belongings, my friendship with others, my security, everything! It was like a foreign experience right here in Bangladesh.”

So what about those people who have had the AIESEC experience before? Had they gained anything? Kashfi, an AIESEC Alumni says, “Once and AIESECer, always an AIESECer. AIESEC has helped me to be the person I am today. Now, any day I can give a speech in front of a large crowd no matter what. I am prepared to face the world and I know I can lead the way for others. This is something you do not learn in textbooks! But, in the end it's up to you to decide what you want to be!”

For more information about AIESEC please visit www.aiesec.org

By Shamma M. Raghib

Teen Diaries
The shoe on the other foot

Barely even friends,
Then somebody bends
~ OST Beauty and the Beast ~

If someone told me a week ago that I'd be sitting in Lamia's bedroom getting a makeover, I'd have had the person committed to an asylum. Who'd have seen this coming?

Let me recap, diary, just so we both know I'm not dreaming this up. On Wednesday, during recess, Prianka and Lamia had this huge and dramatic fight. Well, actually, it wasn't so much a fight as Prianka passing one of her mean comments and Lamia overreacting to it and storming out. Most of the witnesses and there were many didn't even know how to react. Apparently, those two have been best friends for years.

I don't even know what compelled me to seek Lamia out. I mean, until a few days ago, she used to pick on me along with the rest of them. I guess it's because I've been a victim of Prianka's meanness, and know how much it hurts. Anyway, I found her in the washroom crying, and just asked her if she was okay, and the next thing I know, she's sobbing over my shoulder.

Thursday was probably the weirdest school day I've had at RS High yet. Instead of having to find a place to sit, I had a beaming Lami (she insisted on me calling her that) saving a seat for her. She kept glancing wistfully at Prianka when she thought no one was looking; the poor girl was sorely embarrassed by that Afrida girl pointing it out rather loudly.

Recess was a trial, though. Lami, by force of habit, dragged me over to sit with her usual girl group, only, they were caught between Prianka and Lamia, and looked very awkward. Prianka gave me the usual tongue-lashing, and rolled her eyes when my new 'friend' decided to try standing up for me, but to do that girl some credit, she didn't attack Lamia, though I'd been expecting her too. By her coldness though, I have a feeling that the breach may be permanent.

Which brings me to this weekend, and Lamia inviting me over to her place for lunch and movies. Her house was something. Stained glass panels on the doors, terracotta tiles fighting for space with paintings and framed photographs on the walls, etchings on the many mirrors every where, and ornate sand-blasted glass tables teamed up with carved wooden chairs. Everything clashed with everything else. Her mother was dressed in a floral-printed sari, wore loads of make-up and jewelry, even though she was just at home, and stayed glued in front of the television, watching reruns of some Hindi serial. She only raised her eyes long enough to scrutinise me and advise me to get my hair straightened and coloured like some character from one of the serials.

Lamia's room is like something out of Barbie: pink walls, floral curtains, lacy bedcovers, stuffed toys, and candles on pretty tables everywhere. It's stiflingly feminine. I spotted a bookshelf, and stocked up with romance novels. Not that I have anything against romance novels per se, it's just that maybe if she read other stuff too, she would probably be less…fluff-headed? Spending some time with her, though, I came to understand why the poor girl is the way is. She's been raised in a bubble, and if I'm not wrong no one's ever tried to change that.

I don't know if I'm ready to call her my friend yet, but I know this much; I don't hate her anymore. It's funny how life works, isn't it?


By The Girl Next Door

Campus News
Romeo and Juliet by IUB on their 10th convocation

It is always exciting to see student stage productions. The amount of hard work that they put in and the fear of performing in front a large audience for the first time create an atmosphere. But when the individual performances gel together to bring about a near perfect performance, it gives a satisfying feeling both for the actors and the audience.

On occasion of their tenth convocation, the students of Independent (IUB) University Bangladesh staged the evergreen romantic play and one of Shakespeare's most famous work, Romeo and Juliet. It was the first ever effort by the students of IUB to perform such a major work in front of the audience and I have only praises for them.

The drama was presented in Bengali. Although the characters retain the original names and the name of the city of Venice, the style of presentation was such that it would seem that the events takes place in a city much similar to Dhaka. The costumes were elaborate and the stage and lighting were done cleverly.

The brochure did not mention whose translation was used, but I think this particular version was translated in-house and although it wasn't an exact Shakespearean translation, it still holds its worth due to the delivery. Key dialogues such as “What's in a name?” or “My only Love…” were kept consistent, but the rest of the general dialogues were adapted for the stageplay purpose, which added some pace to the telling of the story.

The Drama was directed by Saidur Rahman Lipon, from Dhaka University Department of Dramatics, but all the performers were from IUB. Indeed none of them have acted before and to realize the long hours and the immense effort they had put into learning the basics of stage acting, dialogue delivery and then to memorize them, is just awe inspiring. The students are from various departments and have taken timeouts whenever possible to rehearse for the play. There were hardly any mistakes or forgotten dialogues.

The performance of the central leads, Shofiq Shameen Abir as Romeo and Afsana Sharmin Tumpa as Juliet (who was very cute on stage) stood out. The rest of the crew were equally adept in their roles. The Choreography by Sarita Haider was well done and some of the action scenes (the Montague vs. Capulet scenes) are memorable. All in all, it was a group effort and given that it is their first endeavor, indeed deserves our felicitation.


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