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13th UOWD Graduation Ceremony

Sunday, 13 July, 2008

The 13th Graduation Ceremony of the University of Wollongong in Dubai (UOWD) saw 535 students receiving their degrees at a colourful ceremony at the Jumeirah Beach Hotel, in the presence of invited dignitaries, UOWD staff, graduates and their families.

This event marked the first of two graduation ceremonies being organized by UOWD this year to accommodate the largest number of graduating students in its 15-year history. The second graduation ceremony will be held in November.

Professor Gerard Sutton, Vice- Chancellor, University of Wollongong, Australia, and Chairman of Board of Trustees, University of Wollongong in Dubai, conferred the degrees, in the presence of His Excellency Jeremy Bruer, Australian Ambassador to the UAE, Professor Robert Castle, Pro Vice Chancellor, (Academic & International), University of Wollongong, Australia, and Mr. Raymi van der Spek, Vice President (Administration), UOWD.

Mr. Abdul Majid Al Khaja, an alumnus of UOWD and currently the CEO of Rail Agency, Road and Transport Authority (RTA), who was the guest speaker on the occasion, gave a motivational speech to the graduates.

Ms. Rohini Ajay Kamath, graduating with a Bachelor of Commerce, proposed the Vote of Thanks on behalf of graduating students, and recalled the happy moments she enjoyed at the university.

Top graduating students in each program were honoured at the ceremony, with sponsorship supported by the Australian Business Council in Dubai, All Prints, AudiViz, Coffee Planet, Crystal Gallery, Damas, Deloitte & Touche, DHL, Dubai Quality Group, Dubai Refreshments (Pepsi), IBM, Jumeirah Beach Hotel, Key Information Technologies, Liberty Automobiles, Microsoft, National Bank of Abu Dhabi, South Australian Business Council, Sayed Group, the SHW Group and Standard Chartered Bank.

The graduation ceremony concluded with a reception hosted by the University of Wollongong in Dubai.

The number of graduating students at the UOWD has been rising significantly over the past few years with the final number expected to exceed 1,200 by November 2008. Last year a record number of 736 students received their degrees from H.E. Dr. Hanif Hassan, UAE Minister for Education, in the presence of Mr. Michael Codd A.C., Chancellor of the University of Wollongong, Australia.

In 2006, HH Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the then Chairman of the Executive Council, conferred degrees on 610 graduates.

The first graduation ceremony of UOWD held in 1997 honoured a modest number of 22 students. The following year, the number rose to 47. By 2001, the number of graduates receiving their degrees had swelled to 108 and reached 279 in 2004. A total of 444 graduates were conferred degrees in 2005.

Student Awards
The top graduating student in the Bachelor of Business Administration program
Recipient: Divya Phulwani
The top graduating student in the Bachelor of Commerce program
Recipient: Lif Miriam Hamouda
The top graduating student in the Bachelor of Computer Science program
Recipient: Ream Fawzi M Zueter
The top graduating student in the Bachelor of Internet Science and Technology program
Recipient: Mohammed Arif Khan
The top graduating student in the Master of Business Administration program
Recipient: Vineet Dalal
The top graduating student in the Master of International Business program
Recipient: Jiten Jayant Gajria
The top graduating student in the Master of Quality Management program
Recipient: Tanja Alexandra Bornmann
The top graduating student in the Master of Strategic Human Resource Management program
Recipient: Saumya Drona
The top graduating student in the Master of Strategic Marketing program
Recipient: Fatema Shabbir Golawala
The top graduating UAE National Student
Recipient: Fatma Al Hashemi
Vice Chancellor's Award (Marie Lewis Award)
The Vice Chancellor's Awards recognize the outstanding contributions staff make to the
University of Wollongong. It is a fitting tribute to the academic and general staff who have displayed outstanding and exceptional achievements.

The Marie Lewis Award is in honour of the late Marie Lewis, and recognises the achievement
of a member of the general staff who is completing a degree. Selection is based on academic
performance and service to the University.
Recipient: Arpana Sharma