The first chapter of Ahiduzzaman Sharker’s CBU story begins at the Sydney airport. When he immigrated to Canada from Bangladesh in 2015, he landed with his wife, his young daughter and eight bags of luggage. After a call from his landlord explaining that Ahiduzzaman and his family wouldn’t be able to move in until the next morning, he found himself feeling overwhelmed and unsure of where to go.
CBU’s International Student Advisor, who was at the airport picking up other international students, greeted Ahiduzzaman, found out that he was a future student, and reassured him that she would help him get settled. From this moment on, Ahiduzzaman says the University has been there for him every step of the way.
Ahiduzzaman is graduating with his Bachelor of Health Sciences in Public Health, and says this distinguished program has prepared him for the future he has always wanted. During his time at CBU, Ahiduzzaman is proud to say that he has made the Dean’s list with distinction, and was awarded an Academic Student Research Award. One of his best memories was presenting his research work during CBU’s Research Month. “I think it’s so memorable because there were learned, distinguished guests and researchers who took the time to appreciate my presentation,” says Ahiduzzaman.
Ahiduzzaman also joined the Public Health Society, and was proud to participate in a campaign against binge drinking and drug use, doing his part to encourage a more healthy student body. “Everyone in the society is so fun, cooperative and nice,” says Ahiduzzaman.
During his time at CBU, Ahiduzzaman formed a great bond with Melissa McDonald, Program Coordinator and Instructor of Public Health Sciences. He says she was a great mentor and support system throughout his degree, and he will always remember her kindness. In fact, when his second daughter was born here in Cape Breton, Ahiduzzaman chose his favourite name — Melissa.
Ahiduzzaman’s daughters, ages six and two, have attended countless events at CBU, and he says they feel very comfortable in the university. “When we drive past CBU on the highway my daughter says ‘Papa this is your school!’ and points excitedly,” Ahiduzzaman says. He hopes one day that they will follow in his footsteps and become CBU students as well.
Ahiduzzaman says the greatest thing about CBU is the student engagement. Resources like the writing centre and the math and science centre provided him with a student support system that he feels he would not have had at other institutions.
As he closes the final chapter of his time at CBU, Ahiduzzaman reflects back on the relationship he has developed with the university. “Even when I had no friends or family to turn to here in Canada, CBU was there for me. The staff put all of their effort into helping me and I will always have great memories of CBU,” says Ahiduzzaman.