By Naila Tariq
While American University of Sharjah is well-known for its intense academics, another key focus of the university is extracurricular activities. AUS has a huge variety of extracurricular activities, including student clubs and organizations, community service opportunities, leadership programs, and athletics program’s sports teams that get to compete in international tournaments. Additionally, there is the Student Council for those interested in representing the student body and voicing their concerns to the administration.
All these activities— organized by the Office of Student Affairs— take a lot of time and effort, especially with assignments, exams and classes. In acknowledgement of this, every year AUS shows its appreciation by honoring the students who have actively participated in AUS extracurricular activities with awards, a dinner and even a raffle draw.
This year, more than 600 students were honored at the AUS Annual Student Appreciation Award ceremony held on Monday, May 2, 2016 at Sharjah's Al Jawaher Reception and Convention Centre. The ceremony recognized the dedication, hard work and achievements of athletes, volunteers, Student Council members and university leaders.
In addition to honoring individual students, cultural clubs were also awarded for their participation in this year's AUS Global Day. Categories included Best Corner awards, Performance awards, Club of the Year awards and, for the first time, Best Sustainable Pavilion.
“This year, we encouraged our students to work together to strengthen the unity between clubs and to reflect the event’s theme of ‘Peace throughout the World.’ This initiative forms part of our sustainability efforts as we move towards a sustainable approach in organizing events. In collaboration with our faculty members specialized in the field of sustainability, we offered the Global Day 2016 Best Sustainable Pavilion Award this year to encourage our students to use recycled or recyclable materials, use energy-efficient lighting and to properly dispose of wastes for recycling,” said Dr. Moza Al Shehhi, Dean of Students at American University of Sharjah.
However, none of the events, or individual and club achievements would have been possible if it were not for the efforts of the various AUS administrative departments that foster and encourage the active participation of its student members. The Student Leadership Program, Student Athletics and Recreation, the Student Council and Community Services were all recognized for their efforts.
The ceremony was a hit, showing AUS's appreciation for this year's successes and giving renewed energy and enthusiasm for the myriad of upcoming events and extracurricular activities.
Eight AUS students received the Most Outstanding Active Student Award for their contributions in extracurricular activities in Academic Year 2015-2016. The awardees were:
Student Athletics and Recreation
Ahmed Mohammed Eladl
Student Clubs and Organizations
Mohammed El Kalbani
Khalid Mohammed AbdulRahman
The following awards were presented for participation in AUS Global Day 2016:
Best Corner Awards
1st Place: Emirati Cultural Club
2nd Place: Egyptian Cultural Club
3rd Place: Lebanese Cultural Club
- Best Corner Idea: Syrian Cultural Club
- Best Teamwork (Corner): Northern Africa Clubs
1st Place: Indian Cultural Club
2nd Place: Jordanian Cultural Club
3rd Place: Pakistani Cultural Club
- Best Performance Idea: Chinese Cultural Club
- Best Teamwork (performance): Bangladeshi Cultural Club
Club of the Year Awards were given to the following clubs:
Ethnic: Emirati Cultural Club
Interest-oriented: Photography Club
Best Sustainable Pavilion Award
Winner: Sri Lankan Cultural Club
Honorable Mention: Japanese Cultural Club
"AUS has gained a well-earned reputation for its academic excellence," said Dr. Björn Kjerfve, AUS Chancellor as he congratulated all the winners. "But your contributions outside the classroom - on campus and beyond - as athletes, student volunteers, university leaders and ambassadors have played a significant role in enhancing the standing of our university.”
"As you know, the university has always stressed the importance of activities that help enrich and broaden the campus experience. It is experiences such as these which will stand you in good stead in the future," Dr. Kjerfve added.
Naila Tariq is a student at American University of Sharjah.
Visit www.aus.edu for more information about American University of Sharjah