The grand finale of 'Excelsior 2021 Powered by UCB Stock Brokerage Limited', in alliance with The Business Standard, was held on 5 September on Facebook Live. The Microsoft Excel-based competition organised by North South University's Finance Club was held on a national scale on its fifth edition.
Despite the event taking place virtually amid the pandemic, the event garnered a tremendous response with different universities nationwide taking up the challenge to claim the title of the ultimate maestro in Excel. With 266 registrations in just a span of a week, Excelsior 2021 has set a new record of registrations in its first national edition.
The purpose of Excelsior is to educate undergraduate students countrywide on the importance and implications of building up their soft skills in Microsoft Excel. Therefore, the event was preceded by two informative workshops organised by industry professionals to equip the participants with Excel skills starting from basic formulas to complex macros. This enabled the seasoned users to brush up their skills and for the novice to familiarise themselves with the software. In addition, the participants received the unique opportunity to hear about real experiences from the professionals.
Following the workshops, the event was held in two rounds. The first round tested the participants' Excel acumen and scope of use with a set of multiple choice-based questions. The top 50 participants made it to the final round with their phenomenal display of Excel acumen, where they were provided with the greater challenge of solving a complex Excel-based case. Based on their performance in this round, the top 10 participants were chosen.
Mahfuzul Islam from North South University was crowned champion. Students from the Institution of Business Administration (IBA), University of Dhaka Akibur Rahman and Fardin Al Wafian finished first and second runners-up, respectively. The top three winners received Tk 25,000, Tk 15,000, and Tk 10,000 prize money, respectively. For the top three, their prize came with an added internship opportunity at UCB Stock Brokerage. In addition, each of the top 10 participants received a certificate to confirm their competence in Microsoft Excel.
The Grand Finale took place virtually. The Chair for the session was Prof M Ismail Hossain, the Pro-Vice-Chancellor of North South University. The chief guest was Md Jashim Uddin, the President of the Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI). In addition, the guest of honour, Md Azim Uddin Ahmed, the Chairman of the Board of Trustees of NSU was present. MA Kashem, a member of the Board of Trustees and Dr Gour Gobinda Goswami, the Director of Student Affairs at NSU, also greatly encouraged the participants. The event was also graced by Syed Adnan Huda, the COO of UCB Stock Brockarage LTD. And lastly, in attendance was the faculty advisor of NSU Finance Club, Muhammad Nasiruddin, to announce the winners for Excelsior 2021.