Higher Education Commission (HEC) aims to elevate the socio-economic position of the needy & deserving students by providing access to quality education through needs-based scholarships. Government of Pakistan (GOP) has also duly acknowledged the financial constraints barring students from acquiring higher education and has thus earmarked substantial funds for the improvement of education sector.
According to the national income statistics(by GOP), 80 percent of the families in Pakistan cannot afford the expenses of sending even one boarder to a local public university. Pakistan finished last among a group of 40 countries ranked by the Percentage Share of Enrollment in Private Higher Education (A study by World Bank, 1994) , (Higher Education: The Lessons of Experience, 1994). On September 11, 2002, the GOP formed the Higher Education Commission (HEC) through a Cabinet Ordinance with a "mandate to transform institutions of higher education into world class seats of learning."
The Higher Education Commission in partnership with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) has been offering Scholarships of financially disadvantaged students to study Agriculture and Business Administration Programs since 2004. The USAID is committed to play its role in the progress and development of the higher education sector especially in the fields of energy, agricultural sector, economic development and humanitarian assistance.
The Pak-USAID Merit and Needs based Scholarship Program Phase-II are focused on providing opportunities for access to higher education especially to under privileged candidates who, despite possessing academic merit, are unable to finance their education. The scholarship is not restricted to tuition only, but extends to accommodation and living expenses.
The Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) has approved the program at a total cost of Rs. 2,954.808 million in its meeting held on 6th September 2013. The Project is funded by Government of United States of America as Grant in Aid.
The Phase-I of the program was initiated in 2004 at eleven (11) universities with scope of 1807 scholarships. It is the pride of the program that all the scholarships are awarded, 94 percent of the scholarship recipients had graduated in the semester they expected to graduate.
1.To enable the academically qualified, yet financially needy, Pakistani students to continue university studies in selected private and public universities of Pakistan in the fields of Agriculture, Medical, Business, Social Science and Engineering
2. To enhance the institutional capacity of the Higher Education Commission of the Government of Pakistan and local public and private sector universities in designing and implementing MNBSP Phase II