Tanveer Ahmed has a master's degree in Business Administration from the University of Stavanger Business School. He now works at Bolder AS as a project manager.
Tell us about yourself
My name is Tanveer Ahmed, and I am working as a Project Manager (Business) at Bolder AS. My company is situated in Stavanger, Norway, working on conscious technology. Besides Norway, we have our operations in Sweden, Poland, and India as well.
My journey started in August 2017 when I moved to Stavanger from Bangladesh, my home country, for higher education. Like every international student, I also came with a mind full of dreams and a heart full of wonders of what was lying ahead.
In the middle of my study in 2019, I joined Bolder as a summer intern in the Brand and Business Development team. I had been heavily involved in marketing research and idea exploration and designed a project (service) called Rangers. My company liked the project and decided to implement it. Even though I started as an intern, I was, thereafter, hired as a Business Project Manager for the Rangers project.
Now let me come back to the question of how I got the internship? Well, it was one of my courses where the founder of Bolder AS and AIR by Bolder Eirik Skjærseth, who is also a TEDx speaker and a charismatic leader in the tech realm, came as a guest lecture and gave a presentation about the unique philosophies of Bolder. I was impressed by Eirik's presentation and decided to try the internship program. Like Eirik, UiS Business School also invites other influential individuals to share their experiences with the students. These allow students to have idea about how the real world is working. After attending so many guest lectures, events, and seminars, I found Eirik's Ideology is highly aligned with my thinking. I realized that that career path I was looking for was right in front of me. So, I tried, be myself, and here I am writing my experience for those who want to be part of the same journey that I started in 2017.
What made you choose the University of Stavanger?
Besides providing education, UiS also serves as a hub where students and corporate professionals can mingle and explore the opportunities. UiS delivers the platform for charismatic professionals to showcase their stories to the students and vice versa. When I was applying for the university, I explored the possibilities lying ahead. Therefore I chose UiS over the other two Norwegian universities where I got admission too. I was looking for a university that provides a balanced combination of academic knowledge and applied experience, and I found UiS Business School suitably fitted in this category.
During my master's program, I was heavily involved with academic research for different courses; at the same time, I also got funded opportunities from UiS to visit Finland and Brazil for training purposes. These are unforgettable memories that will always remain with me.
What are your thoughts on the faculty-student interaction?
The university provided many opportunities to participate in social and cultural events through student unions and SiS. UiS arranged different events like traveling to other cities, farms, historical places, dinner events, parties, and boat trips with free or almost free costs. I attended a handful of academic and professional events like training, conferences, guest lectures, and seminars.
Faculty members take student feedback seriously and try to design the course accordingly. They also motivate students to attend various workshops and conferences. In my case, it allowed me to create essential networking with the corporate world.
How would you describe UiS and the Strategic Marketing and Analytics major?
I was majoring in a different specialization at UiS while doing my MSc. However, I chose to do some marketing courses because it was highly relevant to my job. The world is based on digitalization, and it doesn't matter what you do or what you sell; everything has to have a digital presence. Digital transactions, branding, marketing, social media content, and any digital identity is necessary nowadays.
Besides knowing what to do, we also have to know how to optimize it. Good advertising may fail to capture the market attention if we don't know how to optimize it, or nicely channelled marketing content may crash due to a lack of proper branding knowledge. What do we do? This question brought me to Strategic Marketing and Analytics master's courses to grasp the theories and practicalities.
Before coming to Norway or applying for the master's program at UiS, what were your concerns?
As I said earlier, like other international students, I also started my journey with many dreams and possibilities. However, there was a lot of concern in my mind as well. Firstly, how am I going to manage the expenses because I heard Norway is super expensive. Secondly, the language barrier, and thirdly how I am going to handle the winter season. Since I am from a warm country.
Well, I had student housing which is comparatively cheaper than private housing. Besides my savings, I had part-time jobs in the city center. The student earnings were good enough to pay my bills and travel. I know the basic Norsk now; even if you don't know the language, you will find that almost everyone speaks English in Norway, so no worries, chill. In Stavanger, the winter is not usually as cold as what I heard about the Nordic cold. Some snowfalls in the winter, unless it is extreme weather, doesn't make that difference. I bet anyone will fall in love with the snowy white surroundings.
What is your impression of the city of Stavanger?
I am actually a natural wanderer. I love to get lost in the wild and stare at the mountains for hours. Usually, I am not too fond of big cities; instead, I prefer to stay close to the greeneries. After all these years, I still love to stare at the same mountains over and over again. I sometimes take the ferry during my free time and visit one of the beautiful islands and like to spend some time in solitude.
I would like to mention that Stavanger city is one of the smart cities in the world. Besides being so, it maintains a nice harmony between technology and nature. This city has dedicated traffic lanes for cycling, making it a super bike-friendly city. Even if you don't have a bicycle, you can hire one using a mobile app. In addition, if you like hiking, Stavanger could be one of the best places to stay. If you like fishing, trust me, Stavanger has many good places for fishing. Just get your fishing rod and through the bait anywhere in the fjord; you will not be disappointed.
Last but not least, I found peace in my heart here. I love the city, the people and am thankful for the opportunities that the UiS has provided me so far in terms of personal life and career perspectives.