Press Releases



3-Day Data Science Workshop Begins at HEC3-Day Data Science Workshop Begins at HEC<p style="text-align:justify;">​Islamabad, April 18, 2017: Opening ceremony of 3-day Data Science Workshop was held at Higher Education Commission Secretariat here on Tuesday. The workshop will provide networking and collaborative opportunities to local community and extend a platform to share thoughts and learn from domain experts, foreign professors, researchers and industry experts from US, China, UK, New Zealand and Australia.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">Dr. Mukhtar Ahmed, Chairman HEC was the chief guest on the occasion, while Dr. Arshad Ali, Executive Director HEC, Dr. Edward Seidel, Director National Centre for Supercomputing Applications, University of Illinois, and Dr. Ayub Alvi, Chairperson National Computing Education Accreditation Council were also present. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">Speaking on the occasion, Dr. Mukhtar Ahmed emphasized the need for promotion of constructive sciences which lead to welfare of mankind. "Let's work together for the well-being of humanity," he underlined. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">He said that fiction of today is tomorrow's reality. He observed that science has made rapid progress and scientific miracles are a beauty of nature, however destruction caused by misuse of science is also a bitter reality. He urged the scientists and the community associated with Data Science to focus the betterment of human beings in their work. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">In his keynote address, Dr. Edward Seidel shed light on the emergence of Data Science as a new paradigm. Describing the data-enabled transformation of science, he revealed the role of Data Science in various scientific fields. He also discussed topics like Sloan Digital Sky Survey, Big Data, Long Tail of Science, Materials Genome, Big Data Hubs, material innovations, and fundamental observations that scientists have communicated by sharing data. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">Dr. Seidel shared the basic vision of opening data and publication services while describing new dimensions in modern publications. He stressed the need for a concrete policy to ensure effective use of Data Science in every field.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">In his welcome address earlier, Dr. Arshad Ali informed that HEC plans to set up five Data Science Centres in Pakistan -- one in each province and one in the federal capital. He said the purpose of organizing the workshop is to train faculty on teaching Data Science so as to prepare workforce for the future Data Science Centres. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">He underlined that Data Science has an important role not only in Computer Science but in almost all the disciplines including medical, engineering, and agriculture. He said the advent of digital facilities has made it easy to collect and save a huge data, adding that the Data Science has also generated enormous job opportunities.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">Data Science is an emerging field that has gained significant attention in academia as well as industry for last few years. Huge amount of data is being generated by industry, government, telecommunication and private setups, however there is a dire need for professionals who can work on data generated for betterment of local businesses and community alike.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">Due to inadequate training opportunities and awareness building programmes, professional expertise in harvesting Big Data is limited and it is difficult to capitalize on flourishing opportunities of Data Science available across the globe. HEC has taken the initiative of promoting Data Science activities in collaboration with national and international partners both from industry and academia.</p>18-04-2017 12:09:09<img alt="" src="/english/PublishingImages/ThematicImages/HEC%20ICON-15.png" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />
HEC Inks Pact with Overseas Technology for Online Courses, CertificationHEC Inks Pact with Overseas Technology for Online Courses, Certification<p style="text-align:justify;">Islamabad, April 11, 2017: The Higher Education Commission (HEC) Pakistan has signed an agreement with Overseas Technology Private Limited to acquire services of digital content, subsidized online courses and certification of high ranking renowned institutions to the recipients of Prime Minister's Laptop Scheme.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">The signing ceremony was held at the Commission Secretariat here on Tuesday. Ms. Leila Khan, Chairperson, Prime Minister Youth Programme was the chief guest. Dr. Mukhtar Ahmed, Chairman HEC, Dr. Arshad Ali, Executive Director HEC, and other senior officers of the two sides were also present.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">Speaking on the occasion, Ms. Leila Khan appreciated the managements of both HEC and Overseas Technology Pvt. Ltd. for taking measures to provide students with opportunity to secure internationally acclaimed specialization in diversified disciplines leading towards certifications through an online platform. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">She said the courses will enhance learning capabilities of students in their professional career. She urged HEC and Overseas Technology to facilitate students at the time of registration in this programme and throughout their courses. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">Welcoming Ms. Leila Khan to HEC, Dr. Mukhtar Ahmed said the Government is paying due attention for promotion of higher education in the country. He said HEC is effectively implementing Prime Minister's Laptop Scheme and Prime Minister's Fee Reimbursement Scheme the Prime Minister's Youth Programme. He maintained that laptop assembly plant has now been set up in Pakistan making the execution of PM's Laptop Scheme easier. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">The Chairman said over Rs. 6.5 billion has so far been reimbursed to students from less developed areas of Pakistan under the Fee Reimbursement Scheme, adding that HEC has also set up Education Testing Council to ensure free of cost entry tests for admission to universities. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">Referring to Smart University concept, he underlined that HEC has so far enabled 15 universities with Wifi-enabled campuses linked with Safe Campus Project to not only facilitate students but also ensure their security. 'HEC intends to rollout this concept at all public sector universities by 2018," he added.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">Earlier, briefing the Chairperson PMYP about significance of the agreement, Dr. Arshad Ali said that HEC is determined to improve effective utilization of modern technology, adding that improvement in the quality of education and access to education cannot be achieved without use of technology. He said the agreement is a step forward towards creating a learning environment for students. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">The agreement will provide students with an opportunity to secure certifications from renowned institutions and will enhance their skills. A verified certificate from authentic online platform can serve as a proof for an employer that someone is abreast with cutting-edge tools and skills needed for a competitive career internationally. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">​MS and PhD level laptop recipients can sign up and enroll in 70 specialization and associated courses, initially offered under the programme. They can earn a completion certificate upon successful completion of their specific course.</p>18-04-2017 12:06:38<img alt="" src="/english/PublishingImages/ThematicImages/HEC%20ICON-15.png" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />
Afghanistan’s Media Delegation Visits HECAfghanistan’s Media Delegation Visits HEC<p style="text-align:justify;">Islamabad, April 4, 2017: A delegation of media persons and a few academics from Afghanistan, which is on a week-long visit to Pakistan, visited Higher Education Commission (HEC) Secretariat here on Tuesday. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">Dr. Mukhtar Ahmed, Chairman HEC welcomed the delegation and briefed them about development of Pakistan's higher education sector during the last decade. He elaborated different steps taken for a strengthened quality assurance system in higher education sector across Pakistan. The Chairman informed the delegates how different initiatives of HEC for human resource development and promotion of research has brought about tremendous progress in the sector. "Through different schemes for overseas, indigenous, need-based scholarships as well as Prime Minister's Fee Reimbursement Scheme over 200,000 faculty and students have been given scholarships. The more we invest in youth, the more we ensure development of the country," he said.  </p><p style="text-align:justify;">The Chairman said HEC has been playing an active role in increasing equitable access to quality higher education and encouraging relevant research activities. Underlining the strong connection of academia with rapid technological advancement and ongoing digitization process, he said that HEC has taken a number of measures for growth of ICT in the country. In this sphere, HEC has taken various initiatives including establishment of Pakistan Education and Research Network (PERN), Digital Library, and Cloud Data Centre. He maintained that HEC evolved Smart University concept in view of future challenges and opportunities in the higher education sector. He said that HEC has set up Offices of Research, Innovation and Commercialization as well as Business and Technology Incubation Centres in many universities in the country.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">Dr. Mukhtar Ahmed said that Pakistan and Afghanistan are brotherly countries. He informed the delegates that the Government of Pakistan, in Phase-I, offered 3000 scholarships to Afghan youth for their capacity building of which over 600 have completed and returned to Afghanistan, the remaining are still studying. He further said that 3000 more scholarships will be offered through Allama Iqbal Scholarship Programme, the second phase of the project that will be launched in April. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">He said that the recently signed Document of Understanding (DoU) between two countries aims to devise a legal framework for collaboration in higher education sector. He also mentioned that a ceremony was held in Islamabad in February in the honour of Afghan students, which was presided over by the President of Pakistan and special Afghan delegation was invited which was headed by Minister of Higher Education and around 800 Afghan students attended the ceremony. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">​He said that the purpose of these scholarships is to provide Afghan students opportunities of acquiring higher education which are being extended to Pakistani students and develop and progress jointly. He observed that the region has been facing a great 'human tragedy' during the last many decades, however the two nations have fought the unrest and chaos courageously. He stressed the need for promoting mutual trust help each other in all possible ways.</p>18-04-2017 12:03:55<img alt="" src="/english/PublishingImages/ThematicImages/HEC%20ICON-15.png" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />
HEC Stresses Women Empowerment through Higher Education, Entrepreneurship and Socio-economic DevelopmentHEC Stresses Women Empowerment through Higher Education, Entrepreneurship and Socio-economic Development<p style="text-align:justify;">Islamabad, March 8, 2017: The Higher Education Commission (HEC), Pakistan organized a daylong event entitled "Women Empowerment through Higher Education, Entrepreneurship and Socio-economic Development" to celebrate International Women's Day here at the Commission Secretariat on Wednesday. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">Dr. Samina Amin Qadir, Vice Chancellor Fatima Jinnah Women University was chief guest of the ceremony which was also attended by Dr. Mukhtar Ahmed, Chairman HEC, Dr. Arshad Ali, Executive Director HEC, Vice Chancellors, faculty members and students of various institutions.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">HEC paid tribute to Pakistani women who contributed to the country's well-being in social, political, defence, economic and other sectors. It also aimed at projecting Pakistani female academicians, entrepreneurs and social contributors with an aim to motivate other Pakistani women to come forward and contribute towards socio-economic development of the country.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">Speaking on the occasion, Dr. Mukhtar Ahmed said Islam gives equal rights to women and condemns tyranny against them. He added that Islam protects women rights and gives them their due share in properties and assets. Paying homage to women working in the higher education sector, he said women equally deserve to come forward and work for national development. HEC is committed to ensuring provision of equal opportunities to women in the higher education sector, as educated women guarantee a prosperous nation, he stated. It is obligatory upon girls to acquire purposeful education, he emphasized.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">The Chairman said that HEC strongly follows a policy of equality in all of its programmes, adding that it has a stringent stance against women harassment at workplace. He urged the Vice Chancellors to ensure execution of laws enacted to stem women harassment.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">"On this occasion, we reiterate our zero-tolerance policy towards women harassment," he maintained. He said HEC has also signed an agreement with Pink Ribbon to create awareness among girls about the hazards of breast cancer.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">He informed that since inception of HEC in 2002, the rate of access to higher education among females has remarkably increased. "In 2002, the access rate among women was only 32 per cent, however, it has now reached to 48 per cent," he revealed. He also shared that Pakistani universities have as many as 18 female Vice Chancellors at present.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">During the first segment of the ceremony named<em> "Hum Nahin Bhoulay"</em>, the parents of Ms. Marium Mukhtar, a fighter pilot who was martyred in a fighter jet crash, and Ms. Arfa Karim, the late youngest Microsoft certified professional, also shared their views and narrated stories of the two legendary daughters of the nation.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">In the second segment, <em>"Hum Kisi Say Kam Nahin"</em>, Dr. Aalia Sohail Khan, Principal Government Postgraduate College for Women (GPGCW), Rawalpindi described the achievements of visually impaired students of the college in archery. She stressed the need for promoting girls education as well as training of females to meet the challenges facing them in life.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">Dr. Mukhtar Ahmed and Ms. Seema Mughal, Vice Chancellor Greenwich University, Karachi announced Rs. 50,000 each for the GPGCW students for their skillfulness in archery despite being visually impaired.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">On the occasion, notable females from various fields including Ms. Shabana Farooqi, Assistant Professor GPGCW, Mrs. Masarrat Misbah, beautician at Depilex, Mrs. Shehla Javed Akram, Founding President Women Chamber of Commerce, Ms. Riffat Shah, Founding President Human Resource Planning Sector, Ms. Sumaira Sajjad, Assistant Professor Department of Fashion and Design, Iqra University and other noteworthy figures also shared their life stories and achievements in their respective fields.​</p>09-03-2017 11:11:03<img alt="" src="/english/PublishingImages/ThematicImages/HEC%20ICON-15.png" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />
HEC Directs Universities to Ensure Raising Minimum Qualification for LecturersHEC Directs Universities to Ensure Raising Minimum Qualification for Lecturers<p style="text-align:justify;">Islamabad, March 7, 2017: The Higher Education Commission (HEC) has directed the universities and degree awarding institutions to ensure implementation of the Commission's decision to raise minimum qualification to 18 years of education, for appointment of Lecturers.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">In a letter issued by HEC to Vice Chancellors and Rectors, they have been asked to ensure that minimum qualification for appointment of Lecturer should be MPhil / MS or equivalent degree i.e. 18 years, or Masters from a foreign University. Deadline given for decision's implementation is June 30, 2017.    </p><p style="text-align:justify;">The Universities which have already adopted and implemented the decision have been appreciated and advised to continue implementing the decision. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">Moreover, HEC has also extended the cut-off date for raising minimum qualification of Assistant Professors in universities/degree awarding institutions to the level of PhD, to January 1, 2018.  </p>09-03-2017 11:08:54<img alt="" src="/english/PublishingImages/ThematicImages/HEC%20ICON-15.png" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />
HEC, Hungary Sign MoU for Award of 200 Scholarships to Pakistani StudentsHEC, Hungary Sign MoU for Award of 200 Scholarships to Pakistani Students<p style="text-align:justify;">Islamabad, February 21, 2017: The Higher Education Commission (HEC), Pakistan and the Government of Hungary have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) under Higher Education and Scientific Exchange Programme under which Hungary will provide 200 scholarships to Pakistani students to study in Hungarian universities.   </p><p style="text-align:justify;">Engr. Baligh-ur-Rehman, Minister for Federal Education and Professional Training, was chief guest of the ceremony. Dr. Mukhtar Ahmed, Chairman HEC and Mr. Szabo Istvan, Ambassador of Hungary to Pakistan signed the MoU. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">Dr. Arshad Ali, Executive Director HEC, Mr. Waseem S. Hashmi Syed, Adviser HRD HEC, Dr. Mazhar Saeed, Director General Planning and Development, Mrs. Emilia Szabone Nagy, wife of Hungarian Ambassador, and other representatives of HEC, Embassy of Hungary, and European Union were also present. Mr. Nandor Mullner, a Hungarian student studying in International Islamic University Islamabad also attended the MoU signing ceremony.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">Out of 200 scholarships, 125 scholarships will be awarded in Bachelors programmes in addition to 50 scholarships in Masters and 25 scholarships in PhD programmes. Earlier at the onset of a three-year programme in 2015, Hungary announced 240 scholarships and the first batch of 80 students was sent to Hungary while Pakistan announced 30 scholarships for Hungarian students to study in Pakistani higher education institutions. However, following the MoU, the number has been increased from 80 to 200 per year.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">Speaking on the occasion, Engr. Baligh-ur-Rehman termed the increase in scholarships from 80 to 200 an incredible development. This measure will help bringing the two nations closer, he asserted. He held out assurance that the Government of Pakistan will extend all-out support to Hungarian students to come and study in Pakistani institutions. He said the Government of Pakistan is keen to further improve relations with Hungary. He appreciated the role of HEC in facilitating students and availing themselves of opportunities to pursue their education in countries like Hungary. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">Expressing his grief over the recent spate of terrorism incidents, the Minister said Pakistan is committed to overcoming the menace of terrorism and energy crisis. He observed that the situation is far better than the past owing to Zarb-e-Azb Operation and other Government initiatives. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">In his welcome note, Dr. Mukhtar Ahmed described the background of Higher Education and Scientific Exchange Programme between HEC and Hungary. He informed more than 3000 students had earlier applied for the scholarships awarded by Hungary. "The mobility of students between the two countries will create more opportunities for the two nations to come closer," he said. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">He said HEC is planning to expand research collaboration with Hungarian universities. He informed that Hungarian institutions have offered their support in setting up a Sport university in Pakistan. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">Mr. Szabo Istavan said the increase in number of scholarships indicates that the Government of Hungary gives great importance to bilateral relations with Pakistan. "Investment in education is indeed investment in future," he said, adding that the two countries have a long history of diplomatic relations spanning over half a century. He hoped that the academic linkages will build strong bonds between Pakistan and Hungary.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">​Sharing his experience in Pakistani university, Mr. Nandor Mullner said Pakistani students, faculty and the university's administration welcomed him on his arrival. "I feel at home while studying in Pakistan," he said. He expressed a wish that more Hungarian students should come to Pakistan and benefit from the opportunity. </p>22-02-2017 06:25:54<img alt="" src="/english/PublishingImages/ThematicImages/HEC%20ICON-15.png" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />
HEC Launches Pakistan Qualification Register (PQR)HEC Launches Pakistan Qualification Register (PQR)<p style="text-align:justify;">Islamabad, February 17, 2017: The Higher Education Commission (HEC) has achieved another milestone by launching Pakistan Qualification Register (PQR) through e-portal system so that stakeholders of HEC can view online those programmes of Pakistani Universities/Degree Awarding Institutions that have been approved by HEC. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">PQR is an online database which contains information regarding accredited higher qualifications and institutions recognized by HEC of all public and private sector universities including their sub campuses and affiliated as well as constituent colleges. PQR is aimed to provide clearly defined levels of knowledge, skills and competencies to be acquired by every graduate.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">HEC started developing a Qualification Framework for higher education sector in 2009 and took necessary steps to develop tools for implementing the framework covering all HEC chartered public and private higher education institutions in the country. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">PQF is a level-based and outcomes focused mechanism. It sets out the levels on which a qualification can be recognized in Pakistan. It encompasses a comprehensive list of all quality assured qualifications in Pakistan. Each accredited qualification has been assigned a level. It consists of Entry Level-1 to Level-8, describing the difficulty of qualifications at each level.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">PQF has been structured to help learners to make informed decisions about the qualification required, and will help employers to assess what qualification a candidate has achieved. It will help in establishing the national standards of qualifications as well as provide a basis for comparison of qualifications at national as well as international levels. Further, it will help in international recognition of academic qualifications, facilitate trans-national mobility of graduates and learners, in addition to be used as an instrument for qualitative reforms in education system.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">The first announcement for nomination of Focal Persons for PQR and populating the data by universities was made by HEC in October 2016. The response of universities on PQR has been encouraging and till date 144 HEC recognized universities and degree awarding institutions, out of total 183 institutions, have nominated their Focal Persons. It is worth mentioning that till date 15098 programmes have been listed in the PQR portal . </p><p style="text-align:justify;">​The universities have been informed that PQR is going to be linked to HEC initiatives such as attestation system of degrees awarded by the universities, appointment of HEC approved supervisors, award of national research grants for universities, thematic research grants for social sciences, indigenous/overseas scholarships, etc.</p>22-02-2017 06:23:37<img alt="" src="/english/PublishingImages/ThematicImages/HEC%20ICON-15.png" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />





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