President M Abdul Hamid on Tuesday called upon the entrepreneurs in the education sector to change the mentality of doing business with education.
"Changing the mindset of the commercializing education is good for all... Run the university in accordance with the laws and regulations," he said, addressing the first convocation of 'Canadian University of Bangladesh (CUB)' at the Osmani Memorial Auditorium in the capitalTuesday afternoon.
The President, also the chancellor of CUB, added: "A university cannot be run as per anyone's will."
He asked the university authorities not to turn the educational institutions into the commercial ones, but to make those the centre of imparting knowledge and producing graduates fit for the 21st century.
"We don't want private universities to be run as charities... and we do not want universities to be commercialized in the name of education, considering education as a commodity," the head of state mentioned.
Noting that there are currently over 150 universities in Bangladesh, he said, "If we see the newspaper, we notice that some universities are distributing certificates in the name of degrees and many universities have opened factories of making graduate."
To cope with the global progress in the 21st century, he said, it is very urgent to ensure the quality, transparency and accountability of educational institutions with the aim of developing the nation, building a better society and producing world-class graduates.
"Higher education is worthless without quality. So, it must be ensured that higher education is not only the highest certificate," he added.
Expressing grave concern, Hamid said that the number of highly educated unemployed persons in the country is increasing day by day. If work cannot be linked with education, the university may have to shut due to lack of students in the days to come.
The head of state urged the university authorities to take steps to ensure the atmosphere of education as well as to build their own campus and infrastructures.
Nobel Laureate and Rights Activist Kailas Satyarthi was the keynote speaker at the convocation.
Prime Minister's Private Industry and Investment Adviser Salman F. Rahman, Deputy Minister for Education Mohibul Hasan Chowdhury, MP, Chairman of Board of Trustees of CUB Chowdhury NafeesSarafat, Vice-Chancellor Professor Dr HM ZahirulHaque, Senior Advisor of the University Professor Dr Sheikh Mamun Khaled, Advisor Professor Dr. RidwanulHaque and Professor Syed Akhtar Hossain spoke.
The President told the students that they should take the lead in ensuring the country's development and progress in the future and the golden Bangladesh of the Father of the Nation's dream will march forward at their hands.
"You will develop as good citizens by nurturing the history and heritage of the country and enriching yourself with knowledge and the practice of science," he hoped.
Turning to the teachers, the President said, "You are the great builders of a developed nation. You must have a strong moral character and be impartial, fearless and truthful."
He requested everyone to work unitedly to educate and develop the young generation of the country with modern education.
The Chancellor said students should not be limited to studying textbooks, but should also acquire knowledge from external sources along with the academic activities.
He said, "The main goal of education should be to make someone active and knowledgeable. High thinking and simple living will make you a true man. Good conduct and good conversations are the crowns of educational life."
Referring to the dynamic leadership of Prime Minister Hasina, Abdul Hamid said the country is moving forward on the path of development and progress and has graduated to a developing country from a least developed one.
President Hamid said there is no alternative to spreading technology-based education to make Bangladesh a developed country by 2041 as announced by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
The President also directed the authorities concerned to prepare an up-to-date curriculum keeping in mind the issues like nano-technology and artificial intelligence to face the challenges of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (FIR)