alumni, interview, Architecture, human rights, Engineering, youth

IUS Alumni Interviews: Senad Alibegović

Senad Alibegović is a determined activist and influential youth leader, with nearly ten years of experience in social engagement. He holds the Master of Architecture Engineering degree from International University of Sarajevo, and the Master of Political Sciences degree in European Integration from the University of Sarajevo. His major areas of interest include human rights - with a focus on persons with disabilities, disability-friendly design and barrier-free environment, as well as the youth activism and youth leadership.

In 2014, his graduation project that focused on design of schools for inclusive education of persons with disabilities was declared as the best graduate work in BiH.

As part of his extensive practical experience in civil society organizations, he has participated in, co-ordinated and implemented a number of projects, represented BiH as a youth ambassador. In 2014, he became Humanity in Action Fellow for Human Rights, while in 2015 he became one of ten participants of the prestigious Pat Cox internship programme at the European Parliament in Brussels.

Recently, he has worked with a number of local, national and international organizations, including Youth Pulse, Youth Journalists’ Association in BiH (ONAuBiH), Konrad Adenauer Foundation, the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), Swiss Helsinki Committee for Human Rights and Democracy, Humanity in Action, Foundation 787, UNDP, UNFPA and the European Forum Alpbach, positioning himself as a strong voice of BiH youth.

In 2017, he received a Chevening Scholarship of the British Government as one of the promising youth leaders from Bosnia and Herzegovina.

He is currently engaged as a Sales and Marketing Director at innovation centre Networks INT, and as a Managing Director of the first regional innovation forum, Sarajevo Unlimited.

1. What makes education at the IUS distinctive, and how did it affect your career?

Daily cross-cultural communication and very diverse environment at IUS were essential for developing wide range of crucial skills and competences, and it taught me how to interact with people from all different backgrounds. Not to mention, gaining fluency in another foreign language that improved my personal employability. Job opportunities run the gamut - it seems every field is internationalizing to the point of needing bilingual and trilingual staff on their payroll. 

2. Have you participated in the student exchange?

My exchange and internship experience at the IUS were organized both by Student Center at IUS and IAESTE LC Sarajevo, as well as with many other non-governmental organizations that I was member of. As part of academic curriculum at the IUS it is obligatory to do two internships, therefore, first one I had was at Buiro Projektow Jerzy Lutomski in Lodz (Poland) and second one at Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality - Construction Department in Istanbul (Turkey). 

This experience helped me in two ways: it gave me crucial knowledge of how to apply knowledge and skills in the field and helped me to have necessary working experience and good reference for joining demanding job market of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

3. Has studying at the IUS helped you in sense of networking?

Having a strong network of business contacts can really help out your career. Over 80% of job seekers say that their network has helped with their job search; therefore, networking contacts can help with more than job leads. IUS student clubs and Student Center were inviting some of the most prominent CEO's, speakers, motivators, experts and professionals. So, chances of meeting your potential employer at the IUS corridors are bigger than at any other place in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

4. Did you take part in extracurricular activities?

What I loved about being IUS student is possibility of implementing all sorts of extracurricular activities and participation within wide range of already existing platforms and student clubs. The whole working student environment inspired me to establish Architecture Student Assembly in 2010 (ASA IUS) and to offer student club that became leading student body for organization and implementation activities and programs for Architecture Students.

5. What is your message for the current and future IUS students?

Your future is your choice; therefore, choosing higher education institution that will be shaping your knowledge is one of the most important steps. The best possible environment for acquiring knowledge is the one that offers you competent experts and mentors, worldwide known professors with high expertise, contemporary infrastructure, new technologies and inspiring staff, which are exactly reasons why IUS is the leading educational institution in Bosnia and Herzegovina.