KSBL Annual Commencement 2015 – Address by Valedictorian Rakiz Farooq

October 9, 2015

“Thank you *host*.
Chairman, Members of the Board of Governors and Board of Directors, Faculty, KSBL Management, Parents and MY FELLOW GRADUATES OF THE CLASS OF 2015, Congratulations!!! We made it!

I mean 2 hundred and 64 assignments, a hundred and 83 quizzes, 350 case studies and 21 comprehensive examinations later today, we are officially graduates of one of the finest business schools of the country.

Kudos to all of you on surviving the rigor and for truly earning these degrees in your hands.
It seems only yesterday that we had gathered here in the same very hall, the 59 of us. We were all excited just as today but also anxious and nervous then as to what this institute had in store for us.

A comforting word on that day that I still remember came from the Chairman himself, in his welcome speech as he advised us – ‘always remember, it’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey, so enjoy while you are at it. ‘

Indeed I can connect the dots in hindsight today, as it has been an exceptionally amazing and truly worthwhile journey with all of you, one that prepared us all for our different destinations but left us with common memories to cherish.

While we competed for papers and finals, we made everlasting friendships, those that we still relish in our night sittings despite our different morning work destinations.

While we fretted over being force fitted into random assignment groups every term, we learnt to drop the Lahore vs. Karachi fences and to appreciate each other’s unique backgrounds.

We learnt team work and collaboration and successfully went on to form our own teams to organize society events in the history of this institute that were once deemed impossible- I am talking about Strataquest and Simerge ladies and gentlemen.

We won national level business challenges and competitions that were only associated with classified old business schools previously, like the CFA challenge and the Battle of the Brains competition.

Indeed today, for each and every one of us, KSBL is a part of our DNA and we shall look back at these years with fondness as we progress ahead in life.

Today as this is getting over, I do not have any advices to give or life lessons to share as I clearly do not speak from any superior level of wisdom than any of you.

I just want to dedicate my airtime thanking, on behalf of the graduating class, all those who were a part of this journey. All the beautiful people who came in as actors and painters, played their roles, casted their colors, and made this picture for the batch of 2015 ever more memorable and colorful.

I have to start from the Chairman and the Boards of Governors … for they are the ones who envisioned all this way before any of us was even here. Thank you Mr. Hussain Dawood and the board for your visionary leadership in establishing and running this institute. We assure you that we will hold dear the values you have inculcated in us through this degree and shall forever strive to take your vision forward.

Faculty ladies and gentlemen, is the next equally important pillar of this journey. When I think about these luminaries, I’m literally lost for words on how to thank them. But I think there is no better way to thank anyone than to tell them that they impacted you.

Yes, our dear professors, each one of us is a different person today than we were two years ago. And It is because, each and every time, I don’t know whether you know this or not, when you came in that lecture hall, not only the course content that you put across, but even the way you communicated, moved around the class, talked or even scolded us, someone somewhere in the back benches was role modelling you, picking up cues for their own personal and professional development from the way you carried yourself.

Whether it was Dr. JG, sharpening our business intelligence or Dr. Zeeshan, epitomizing, how you balance worldly excellence with family life and religious obligations for us. Whether it was Dr. Rehan broadening our perspective on pressing global issues or Dr. Athar winning our hearts with his charming sense of humour, OR simply Dr. Ali Khalil Malik teaching us that 9 am in the morning MEANS 9 a.m. in the morning. Everything adds up in the end to make us who we are.

And as we move out today, from the gates of this university, we will carry with us, not just this degree, but in each one of us we will carry a piece of each one of you faculty members.
And I promise you that we will hold it with dignity, keep it with pride, as from now on forever, you will be a part of us.

With the faculty, naturally we cannot forget the ever loving and caring “staff” of KSBL. Be it Miss Faiza’s seamless accessibility and personal concern for every student or Shah Faisal’s ever smiling face while marking our CPs. Adeel’s special way of greeting the students from Punjab in Punjabi when they came back from holidays, or just Aqeel bhai’s swag during invigilating examinations, These people really made the best support system we could have asked for while our stay here at KSBL. And for that we thank them. We thank all the staff of all the departments from the bottom of our hearts.

Finally, ladies and gentlemen, it is also time to thank those who run the show from behind the curtains. Indeed every time we gathered in the classroom for the learning process, we were enabled to do so only because someone had made a comfortable bed for us to sleep last night. Or someone who had paid our last fee.

These are the often unsung, taken-for-granted part of our lives that we take very less time out to thank. May be because there are not enough words to thank them.

So our class had a tradition whereby at the end of every course, in the last session, we used to rise and give a standing ovation to the outgoing faculty member for their contribution to us.

Today my dear class fellows, let us extend this tradition to include these show runners from behind the curtains – our parents and family members.

May I please request, class of 2015, rise from your seats, look at them and give them an applause like nothing they have ever heard, because truly only words cannot do justice to what they do for us.

Ladies and Gentlemen, One journey comes to an end today and I thank you all for being a part of it. But I am sure that there are plenty more waiting for us out there. Class of 2015, Congratulations once again and Best of Luck achieving new milestones in all the future journeys of your lives.”
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