It was a day of mixed feelings for graduating students of Dhaka University yesterday, as they celebrated successful completion of their studies and bade farewell to the university they called home for the last four years.
Wearing convocation gowns and caps with tassels hanging from them, thousands of graduates participated in their convocation in an effervescent atmosphere.
The cloudy December morning could put no damper on the DU campus, buzzing with an air of excitement not only from students but also from family members arriving to watch their children, grandchildren, nieces and nephews receive their degrees.
“Graduation is one hurdle of life that we all need to cross, and when you cross it and look behind, all you see is a journey that has made a place in your heart. I will cherish the memory for the rest of my life,” said Nahida Islam, a graduate of theatre and performance studies department.
Like her, 20,796 graduates were conferred their degrees at the 52nd convocation held at the university’s central playground.
The most common of the sights and sounds following the ceremony was of fresh graduates embracing their parents, as their teachers looked on with pride, maybe recalling fondly the first time they had met these students.
As the convocation ceremony drew to its end, graduates came out of the convocation ground in a stream.
There were smiling faces all over the campus, as cameras flashed endlessly to capture the celebrations; it was hard to take a step without photobombing someone.
All popular gathering spots on campus, including Hakim Chattar, Curzon Hall, Mall Chattar, Shaheed Minar, Fine Arts Faculty and TSC, were abuzz with youths taking a final stroll on the campus as students.
Groups of graduating friends cheered and threw hats in the air for the photos, while some shared the moment with their parents.
At the programme, 98 students received gold medals for their outstanding results in different disciplines, while 57 researchers were conferred with Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degrees, and 14 got Master of Philosophy (MPhil) degrees.
“I express my heartfelt gratitude to my teachers, and classmates for helping me throughout the journey to obtain good results,” said Ragib Rahman, who won Kazi Mohammad Idris memorial Gold Medal.
President Abdul Hamid, who is the Chancellor of the University, presided over the Convocation ceremony.
Prof Dr Takaaki Kajita, Director of Institute for Cosmic Ray Research, University of Tokyo, was the convocation speaker.
He was also conferred with Doctor of Science (Honoris Causa) at the ceremony.
There were two extended venues of the convocation at Eden Mohila College and Dhaka College, where graduates of seven affiliated colleges of DU were connected with the main venue through videoconference.