AIUB Oratory Club (AOC): Nurturing Debating Excellence and Public Speaking Prowess

In the dynamic landscape of Bangladesh’s debating circuit, one name shines brightly – the AIUB Oratory Club (AOC). Established in 1998 by Mr. Shiblee S. Abdullah, a faculty member of the American International University-Bangladesh (AIUB), this club has risen to prominence as a formidable force in both national and international debating circles. With an unwavering commitment to fostering communication and leadership skills among students, AOC has carved its path to success. Let’s delve deeper into the captivating journey and remarkable achievements of the AIUB Oratory Club.

1. A Legacy of Excellence: Founded with a vision to empower students with effective communication skills, AOC has evolved into a platform that nurtures confidence, critical thinking, and eloquence. Over the years, it has earned a reputation for its outstanding performance in both English and Bengali debates.

2. National and International Triumphs: AOC’s journey has been marked by a series of remarkable victories on both national and international stages. The club’s dedication and preparation have translated into numerous prestigious awards and accolades. This success is a testament to the club’s commitment to quality and competence.

3. Conquering National Championships: AOC’s presence in various national debating championships has been nothing short of extraordinary. Its members have consistently showcased their prowess, bagging victories and leaving a lasting impression on respected institutions. The club’s dominance in competitions is a reflection of their rigorous training and determination.

On February 19, 2022, the AIUB Oratory Club (AOC) won the ATN Bangla Debate for Democracy Final at the Bangladesh Film Development Corporation (BFDC), Dhaka. AOC defeated 4 teams, including Stamford University in the final round, where they argued in favor of the government’s position. Mr. Hasan Ahmed Chowdhury Kiron moderated the debate, and Dr. Debapriya Bhattacharya was the chief guest. The topic was “আর্থিক খাতের শৃঙ্খলা রক্ষায় সরকারের সদ্বিচ্ছার ঘাটতি নেই.” AOC’s participants included Tasaddicul Naim, Tuhalika Saha, Sumaiya Binte Zilani Chowa, Ahasun Ullah Riaz from the Faculty of Science & Technology, and Ishtiaque Ahmed Badhon from the Faculty of Business Administration. This marked a significant achievement for AOC, showcasing their oratory skills in a national TV debate tournament, bringing pride to the club and the university.

4. Flourishing Beyond Debates: AOC is not solely focused on debates; it extends its influence to workshops, seminars, and debate festivals on a national level. These events serve as platforms for students to refine their skills, learn from experts, and engage in intellectual discourse beyond the debate floor.

For example, on June 6, 2023, AIUB hosted a crucial panel discussion titled “Digital Technologies: The Opportunities & Challenges in Combatting Climate Change,” in partnership with the Science, Technology, Innovation & Public Policy Forum (STIPPF). This event featured a diverse panel comprising policymakers, industry experts, diplomats, and academics.

Image credit: Bangladesh Post

The esteemed panelists included Saber Hossain Chowdhury, MP and chairman of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on the Ministry of Environment, Forest, and Climate Change; Charles Whiteley, Ambassador and head of Delegation of the European Union in Bangladesh; Ishtiaque Abedin, Founder Member and Chairman, Board of Trustees, AIUB; Dr. A.F.M. Saiful Amin, Professor at BUET & Acting Chair of BAETE, IEB; and Md. Sazzadul Hassan, Chairman and MD of BASF Bangladesh Limited. Riaz Hamidullah, Bangladesh’s Ambassador to the Netherlands, joined virtually.

The discussion revolved around the pivotal role of digital technologies in addressing climate change. The consensus was that these technologies offer innovative solutions to climate challenges. Dr. Muhammad Tarik Arafat, Professor at BUET, moderated the session. STIPPF, a non-profit think tank, aims to bridge science, technology, innovation, and public policy.

Prior to the panel discussion, an engaging European Mock Parliament Debate centered on “Corporate Sustainability: Due Diligence Directive” took place, with 27 participants from various universities. Prof. Dr. Md. Abdur Rahman, Pro-Vice Chancellor of AIUB, expressed gratitude to all, emphasizing the importance of collaborative efforts.

This event underscored the urgent need for innovative, technology-driven solutions to combat climate change, leaving us with hope and determination to address this critical global challenge.

5. AOC’s Global Footprint: The club’s success isn’t confined to national borders. AOC has demonstrated its mettle on the international stage, particularly in the realm of public speaking. This international recognition can be attributed to the comprehensive workshops and internal debates that AOC conducts, honing its members’ abilities.

7. Celebrating Special Occasions: AOC adds a creative twist to its activities by organizing fun debates and role-playing debates on various special occasions, such as Valentine’s Day, Victory Day, New Year, and Pohela Boishakh. These events not only showcase versatility but also engage participants in entertaining and insightful debates.

6. Grooming Future Orators: AOC’s commitment to nurturing young talent is evident in its annual intra-university public speaking contest, conducted in both Bengali and English. By providing a platform for emerging speakers, AOC actively contributes to the development of confident and skilled communicators.

8. Participating in grand Programs: In the heart of Bangladesh’s academic realm, the AIUB Oratory Club (AOC) emerges as a vibrant hub of eloquence and intellectual dynamism. it encourages participation on grand programs like Berger presents Rise Above All 2023 powered by Daraz– The largest public speaking event in the nation is back for the 7th time, hosting the most prominent speakers and the most influential brands. Please welcome “Berger presents Rise Above All 2023, powered by Daraz, in association with Prothom Alo Digital, The Daily Star, and Channel i.” This year the theme is “From Notes to Noteworthy.” Also, before and after-program sessions are arranged to encourage participation and take the full benefit from the programs effectively.

In a groundbreaking move, AOC bridged the gap between inter-college and inter-university debating clubs in Bangladesh. This initiative not only promotes healthy competition but also strengthens the overall debating culture in the country.

The AIUB Oratory Club‘s journey of excellence would not have been possible without the unwavering support of AIUB’s management, faculties, and the dedication of its members. This collaborative effort has propelled AOC to its current stature as a prominent debating powerhouse.

Last Lines

In conclusion, the AIUB Oratory Club (AOC) stands tall as a beacon of eloquence, intelligence, and innovation in Bangladesh’s debating landscape. From its inception in 1998 to its remarkable achievements on both national and international stages, AOC’s legacy is one of dedication, empowerment, and transformative growth. As the club continues to shape the next generation of confident communicators and leaders, its impact reverberates far beyond the boundaries of the university campus.

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