“Nothing feels better than the feeling that you get from helping others,” says Bluffton University Director of Buildings and Grounds Mustaq Ahmed. Photo by Brock Goetz
Bluffton University students interact with professors on a daily basis, and they regularly spot of President James Harder, yet the majority of students aren’t aware of the important staff behind the scenes who keep the campus running. From Admissions to the bookstore and Buildings and Grounds, this campus would not be able to function without many key individuals. It’s possible to attend Bluffton for all four years and never interact with some of these friendly, approachable people who have served this campus and community in ways that embody the university’s enduring values of discovery, community, respect and service. This is the fourth in a series of profiles on some of Bluffton University’s unsung heroes.
By Brock Goetz
Mustaq Ahmed graduated from Bluffton University in 1977 and returned to Bluffton 25 years later to work as the director of Buildings and Grounds. As the director of Buildings and Grounds, Ahmed oversees campus grounds, transportation, facility improvement and all the energy management systems and their software.
Ahmed was born in Bangladesh, and he initially heard about Bluffton University through his affiliation with the Mennonite church there. In his early twenties, Ahmed moved to the United States and attended Bluffton University. The difference between the United States and Bangladesh was vast.
“It was almost like living two completely different lives,” Ahmed said.
Even though the two places seemed so different, he said each provided its own value and gave him insight on multi-cultural experiences.
Ahmed attributes much of his success to the degree he earned from Bluffton and views his job here as a chance to give back to the community that nurtured his growth as a professional.
“I am at a point in life where I can retire, but it is no longer about the money for me,” Ahmed said. “It is more about the chance to give back or help in any way that I can.”
In terms of Bluffton’s core values Ahmed most strongly identifies with the value of service. He said doing good for others is an important part of his job and the driving factor for why he does what he does.
“Nothing feels better than the feeling that you get from helping others,” Ahmed said.
Read about other unsung heroes of Bluffton University featured in this series: