Business Stamp and Inkpad

Relationship: Child of im/migrant

The text on this wooden stamp reads “Lecturer/Dept of Elect, and Electronic Eng/B.I.T Khulna”. The ink pad and business seal were given to my father upon working at his first job as a university lecturer in Bangladesh in 1987. Growing within humble upbringings amongst ten siblings amidst the Bangladeshi Civil War of 1971, my father would in times find himself as a child standing for more than six hours on lines for his family’s daily ration of rice. Nonetheless, my father secured a job immediately upon graduating college as a university lecturer teaching computer programming at Khulna University in 1987. Despite holding a well-respected job, my father applied to universities in Japan and the United States for his graduate studies. Though he was accepted to the graduate program at University of Pennsylvania, he could not afford to pay for the exuberant tuition fees and instead attended South Dakota School of Mines and Technology receiving a Masters in electrical engineering. With the burgeoning rise of the computing industry during the 1990s, my father was able to streamline into computer programming, where he continues to work to this day. Thirty years after my father received his first job, his ink pad still gives a dark, rich hue. My mother gently chides that my father intends to keep his business stamp as a “museum artifact”. My parents’ own thriving desire for success is encompassed within a single business stamp, and this is foundational to my identity as an American.

Place(s): Bangladesh
Year: 1991

– Rafa Sattar

Relationship:  Child of im/migrant Child of im/migrant