Center of Excellence in Higher Education
The First Private University in Bangladesh

NSU: A BRIEF HISTORY

North South University (NSU), the first private university in Bangladesh, was established in 1992 by the then Foundation for Promotion of Education and Research (FPER), a charitable, non-profit, non-commercial and non-political organization. The FPER later was renamed as the NSU Foundation and is presently called The North South Foundation for Education and Research. The Foundation is comprised of a group of eminent industrialists, prominent patrons of education, notable philanthropists, widely experienced academics and senior civil servants of the country. In the early 1990s, they had a dream to set up a world-class university as a center of excellence in higher education in the private sector. Their dedication, tireless efforts, and hard work paved the way for the approval of the establishment of NSU.

Since, at that time, there was no relevant law in the country to set up and operate a university in the private sector, they took the entire burden on themselves and extended their best efforts in assisting the then government in formulating the relevant law and enacting it. Subsequently, the government, pursuant to the newly enacted law the Private University Act (PUA)-1992 (now repealed by PUA-2010), approved the establishment of NSU. The University was formally inaugurated on 10 February 1993 and started its journey in a very modest way. Later, in 2012, the NSU Foundation, in the light of the PUA 2010 and as instructed by the Ministry of Education and the University Grants Commission, formed the NSU Trust with the same group of people as the Foundation and vested the entire management and administration of NSU in its Board of Trustees (BOT). The Honorable President of the People's Republic of Bangladesh is the Chancellor of NSU.

The Board of Trustees (BOT) is the apex policy making and approving body of the university. Mr. M. A. Hashem is the current Chairman of the BOT. A renowned industrialist of the country, Mr. M. A. Hashem is the former Member of Parliament of Bangladesh Jatiya Sangsad; Chairman of the Partex Group; Advisor to the Janata Insurance Company Ltd.; Founder of Noakhali Diabetic Samity and Founder President of Noakhali M. A. Hashem Degree College.

The other members of the BOT are Mr. Azim Uddin Ahmed, Mr. Benajir Ahmed, Mr. Iftekharul Alam, Dr. Roushon Alam, Mr. Ragib Ali, Mr. M. A. Awal, Mr. Yussuf A. Harun, Mr. M. A. Kalam, Mr. S. M. Kamaluddin, Mr. M. A. Kashem, Mr. Abul Kashem, Mrs. Yasmin Kamal, Mrs. Rehana Rahman, Mr. A. S. F. Rahman, Mr. Mohammed Shajahan, Dr. Junaid Kamal Ahmad, and Prof. Syed A. Ahad. All of them are also the members of the NSU Trust. Professor Atiqul Islam, the Vice-Chancellor of NSU, is the Ex-Officio Member of the BOT. The other members of the NSU Trust are Mrs. Shaista Ahmed, Mr. Shah A. Hannan, Mr. Nurul H. Khan, and Mr. Mahbubar Rahman.

The Syndicate is next to the BOT and is headed by the Vice-Chancellor. The Vice-Chancellor is also the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the University. He is responsible for managing the administrative and academic affairs of the university as per the Private University Act (PUA 2010), and implementing the policy guidelines set by the BOT. The Vice-Chancellor is assisted by a Pro Vice-Chancellor and a Treasurer. All of them are appointed by the Honorable Chancellor on recommendation of the BOT.

Professor Atiqul Islam is the current Vice-Chancellor of NSU. He was the Pro Vice-Chancellor (Engagement) of Edith Crown University in Australia. Earlier he served as the Dean of the Faculty of Business and Government at the University of Canberra. Over his long academic career he served at the University of Sydney, University of New South Wales, Curtin University, University of Canterbury and the National University of Singapore. He has a strong track record in academic administration and negotiating international programs.
In general, NSU is modeled on US universities and follows their academic features such as semester systems, credit hours, letter grades, etc. When first introduced, its curricula of undergraduate programs such as Economics, Business, and Computer Science were largely modeled on the curricula of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and were duly approved by the University Grants Commission (UGC) of Bangladesh, the highest accrediting authority of higher education of the country. NSU has an International Advisory Board, comprised of scholars from all over the world, to counsel and to suggest improvements on academic matters of the university. The university is delivering a substantial general education curriculum, has a strategic plan, and has initiated and implemented student instructional learning assessment for degree programs and courses and is in the process of developing the infrastructure for evaluation of institutional effectiveness for its institutional accreditation.

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