Anna Bowers · September 27, 2019
Buena Vista, Va.—The distinguished Dr. Nasser Siabi, OBE spoke at University Forum to students, faculty and staff about serving God by reflecting His light and assisting mankind.
As co-founder and CEO of Microlink, Dr. Siabi has collaborated with universities, governments, and multinational corporations to promote inclusion and accessibility in education and the workplace. For his work which has helped more than a quarter-million people, Dr. Siabi was awarded Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth II.
“Nasser has opened doors for more people to be able to have tremendously successful lives and increase the productivity of the world,” President Wilcox said during his introduction. “This man is such a good person, has so much opportunity to impact the world and it is a thrill for me that he is here with us.”
When Dr. Siabi first spoke at Southern Virginia during President Wilcox’s Inauguration, he likened the University to a candle factory that gives light to students who in turn share their light with the world. During Friday’s remarks, he continued with this theme after being inspired by the Festival of Light at Temple Square in Salt Lake City, Utah.
“I saw the sign that said, ‘Festival of Light: We Celebrate the Light from God,’” he said. “How wonderful, because that is precisely what I was referring to—the light of God.
“[Students] come here, they get polished by the likes of President Wilcox and all of the wonderful teachers and become a shining mirror,” he continued. “Then they go out and reflect the light of God, and that is far more powerful because it’s eternal.”
Dr. Siabi invited everyone in attendance to reflect the light of God and serve mankind by helping to improve global education and employment opportunities.
“The mission is to educate the world and give them a meaningful job,” said Dr. Siabi. “I think this University can be the leader in the world today, because you are selfless, you care, and you have been fortunate and privileged to be guided by God to be here.”
To showcase how technology can augment education, Dr. Siabi demonstrated a speech translation tool—powered by artificial intelligence—on the screen in the Knight Arena which transcribed his words to text while simultaneously translating them into Spanish.
“The kind of technology we’ve been working with—and it’s getting better—makes it possible for you to have classrooms where anyone with any capabilities could participate,” explained Dr. Siabi.
A devout Muslim who has dedicated his life to reflecting light and helping others, Dr. Siabi shared advice with students about helping others and serving God.
“My advice to young people is that if you want to be successful, work hard. If you want to be successful and happy, work hard for God, because He gives you everything you want, and it will be forever.”