Bangladesh Marine Academy Alumni Association (BMAAA) meeting and a visit to Bangladesh Marine Academy

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Bangladesh Marine Academy Alumni Association (BMAAA) meeting and a visit to Bangladesh Marine Academy

Chattogram, 15 November 2022

As a part of the Executive committee of the Bangladesh Marine Academy Alumni Association (BMAAA), we visited the academy. Subsequently, we briefly met with the Executive Committee members at the boat club, Patenga, Chattogram.

It was a fruitful visit. We saw the development of the academy and learned about the growth plans. ECNEC has granted a sizeable fund to the academy, which will be used for breaking the existing swimming pool and replaced with a health complex where a new swimming pool will be built. The new engineering workshop will be constructed after demolishing the existing one. Additional developments are also in the plan.

It is heartening to know that the demand for fresh officers aboard foreign vessels is at an all-time high. The Commandant, Dr. Sajid Hussain, had a frank discussion with us about the speedy expansion of the employment of fresh graduates. Dr. Sajid and the instructors are working hard to propel the academy to new heights. He sought the support of our community.

The Commandant showed his frustrations over the chronic shortage of teachers. Some teachers have joined other organizations or taken foreign assignments for better opportunities in pay as well as status. This will hamper the quality of education if we do not fill the void as soon as possible. One way to fill the void is to provide attractive remunerations to the instructors besides other incentives. This job should not be treated like other government positions. The seafaring officers have better financial packages when they sail. The Navy and Coast Guard offer long-term benefits that are more lucrative than their pay scales. Our government has to address this issue seriously. The quality is directly related to the good education delivered by merchant marine Deck and Engineering Officers. Addressing the issue by appointing Naval Officers is not a solution. The Navy is a part of the defense forces that are experts in warfare and ammunition handling. The experience as a mercantile seafarer should be considered when appointing teachers in BMA.

In addition to the visit to the academy, we held a brief meeting with five members of the BMAAA Executive Committee in the Boat Club, Patenga. We discussed the procedural matters regarding the upcoming election of the Executive Committee, which will replace the existing interim committee. The interim committee was formed upon the unification of AABMA and JMAAA. It was a big accomplishment, and we are proud of it. The BMA alumni can look forward to a fresh horizon. I, as the interim President of the BMAAA, urge all alumni to extend their hands in the development of our dear academy and chart the future course of the association.

Ghulam Suhrawardi 6N

President, Interim Executive Committee, BMAAA

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