Press Releases



HEC Proposes Measures to Promote Employability PhDsHEC Proposes Measures to Promote Employability PhDs<p style="text-align:justify;">Islamabad, November 15, 2018: Recognising the hardships facing unemployed PhDs, the Higher Education Commission (HEC) has proposed to take measures to help increase employment opportunities for PhD graduates. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">"HEC recognises difficulties being faced by the unemployed PhDs." To alleviate the hardships, HEC has held several deliberations with representatives of unemployed PhDs and other stakeholders to evaluate the problem and institute steps that will help in creating additional employment opportunities for PhD graduates," says an HEC statement.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">According to the statement, eligibility criteria under Interim Placement of Fresh PhDs (IPFP) programme will be reviewed to strengthen placement of PhD graduates in all HEC recognised universities. HEC will institute capacity building programmes for the development of young PhD graduates in essential soft skills, including measures to assess and determine capacity building needs. HEC will evaluate the possibility of including R&D organisations and affiliated colleges -- through the corresponding affiliating university -- under IPFP to open up new placement opportunities. The process will be completed within a period of 30 days.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">HEC will compile data on current faculty recruitment practices in HEIs with reference to regular vis-à-vis visiting, contractual, daily paid and subject specialist faculty, undertake analysis thereof and issue advice to the HEIs w.r.t the admissible ratio of regular vis-à-vis temporary faculty, periodical convening of Selection Boards, and completion of recruitment cycle within a period of 90 days. Incompliance of the policy guidelines will have reflection on the university funding and ranking. The exercise will be completed within a period of six weeks.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">The eligibility criteria for international Post Doc Fellowships will be revised to include both employed and unemployed PhD graduates upon approval of the competent authority. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">All unemployed and employed PhD graduates will register themselves at PhD Data Bank launched by the HEC in August 2018 to avail HEC services within a period of 30 days. Un-registered PhD scholars shall not be considered eligible for HEC services.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">HEC will examine the feasibility of instituting 'PhD Scholars Support Programme' for protecting their livelihood. Under the programme, unemployed PhD graduates will be placed at all public educational, research and administrative institutions for a maximum period of 12 months on a monthly remuneration not exceeding Rs.50,000 and will be expected to ably serve the concerned organisations.     </p><p style="text-align:center;">===============</p>15-11-2018 18:09:32<img alt="" src="/english/PublishingImages/ThematicImages/HEC%20ICON-15.png" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />
US Chargé d’Affaires Calls on Chairman HECUS Chargé d’Affaires Calls on Chairman HEC<p style="text-align:justify;">​Islamabad, November 9, 2018: Ambassador Paul W. Jones, US Chargé d'Affaires to Pakistan visited the Higher Education Commission (HEC) and called on Dr. Tariq Banuri, Chairman, and HEC here on Friday. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">Welcoming the dignitary, Dr. Banuri appreciated the US Embassy's role and efforts to promote collaboration between the Pakistani and US universities and higher education institutions. "The US and Pakistan have an extensive record of collaboration in the higher education sector," he stated. He mentioned that the US support has been very critical in establishing and strengthening some of the best Pakistani universities including Institute of Business Administration (IBA), Karachi; Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS); and, University of Agriculture, Faisalabad (UAF).    </p><p style="text-align:justify;">The Ambassador said the US extends general support to its friendly countries in various areas, especially education, as it is a very significant sector of long term growth.  </p><p style="text-align:justify;">Appreciating the USAID Centre of Advanced Studies (CAS) programme, Dr. Banuri said that efforts are afoot to ensure sustainability of the centers. He further said that the US Fulbright initiative is the largest programme of its kind in the world and Pakistan is benefiting from it. He maintained that the US-Pakistan research collaboration is another remarkable milestone, as the 7<sup>th</sup> phase of the US-Pakistan Science and Technology Programme is being completed while the 8<sup>th</sup> phase of the programme will soon be launched. Collaborative research initiatives need to be encouraged, emphasised by both, Dr. Banuri and Ambassador Jones.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">The Chairman stressed that HEC looks forwards to expanded bilateral collaboration. He emphasized on no-cost extension in the CAS projects in order to enable effective utilization of resources put in them. He underlined the need for engagement of US universities in support for capacity building of Pakistani universities and the revival of National Academy of Higher Education (NAHE). He informed the dignitary that NAHE will provide trainings for potential university leadership, faculty and administrative staff of universities. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">Dr. Banuri said HEC has recently taken measures to streamline the process of degree verification and equivalence. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">The Ambassador said that undergraduate Pakistani students also need to apply for admission in the US universities. He said the number of undergraduate students studying in the US institutions could be increased. He hoped that the bilateral collaboration will thrive and the academic relations will further strengthen mutually beneficial relations between Pakistan and the United States.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">The Ambassador was accompanied by Mr. Christopher Fitzgerald, Public Affairs Officer; Mr. Matthew Singer, Cultural Affairs Officer; Erica Rounsefell, Director, USAID Office of Education; and Nadia Kamran, Senior Cultural Specialist. Lt. Gen. (Retd.) Muhammad Asghar, Acting Executive Director, HEC and Dr. Mahmood ul Hassan Butt, Consultant, HEC also attended the meeting.</p><p style="text-align:center;">===============</p>10-11-2018 06:44:29<img alt="" src="/english/PublishingImages/ThematicImages/HEC%20ICON-15.png" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />
DAAD Delegation Calls on Chairman HECDAAD Delegation Calls on Chairman HEC<p style="text-align:justify;">Islamabad, November 8, 2018: A delegation of DAAD (<em>Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst</em>), the German Academic Exchange Service met with Dr. Tariq Banuri, Chairman, Higher Education Commission (HEC) at the Commission Secretariat.            </p><p style="text-align:justify;">The delegation comprised Dr. Katharina Fleckenstein, Head of Section Scholarship Programmes Middle East, North Africa - ST33, German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), Bonn Germany; Dr. Simone Burkhart, Head of Division, Financial Support, DAAD; Inge Iqbal, Director, DAAD Information Centre Islamabad; Ms. Rosenberger, and Cultural attaché at the German Embassy, Islamabad.  </p><p style="text-align:justify;">Talking to the delegation, Dr. Banuri appreciated the ongoing collaborative endeavours between HEC and DAAD. He said Germany hosts Pakistani students who win HEC scholarships to study in Germany, while the DAAD representatives guide them in all academic issues. He said the two sides need to enhance research collaboration. He said HEC encourages Pakistani students going into German universities, develop networking, and come back to serve Pakistan. He said around 60 PhD students have been sent off to German universities this year.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">Since the inception of HEC Overseas PhD Scholarship Programme, 700 Pakistani Phd scholars are studying in German universities, while 400 students have completed their studies and returned to Pakistan. It said the collaboration needs to be expanded on the pattern of US-Pakistan Science and Technology Cooperation Programme and Pak-France PERIDOT Research Programme under which researchers identify areas of research and the concerned side fund them. It underlined that German universities are good at robotics, mechatronics, Information Technology, Biology and various other areas.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">Dr. Banuri said the joint academic initiatives are based on a two-way gain and help strengthen country-to-country relationships. He said HEC is looking for faculty exchange between Pakistani and German institutions. He said the two sides are required to identify potential areas in which they can develop collaboration and carry out research initiatives.</p><p style="text-align:center;">===============</p>08-11-2018 17:58:14<img alt="" src="/english/PublishingImages/ThematicImages/HEC%20ICON-15.png" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />
HEC Kicks off Series of Workshops on Erasmus ProgramHEC Kicks off Series of Workshops on Erasmus Program<p style="text-align:center;"><strong>Dr. Banuri Stresses Need for Leveraging Erasmus</strong><sup>+ </sup><strong>Programme Opportunities</strong></p><p style="text-align:justify;">Islamabad, November 5, 2018: Dr. Tariq Banuri, Chairman, Higher Education Commission (HEC) urges higher education institutions, faculty and students to avail themselves of the opportunities offered under Erasmus<sup>+</sup> Programme.    </p><p style="text-align:justify;">He said this while addressing a workshop on Erasmus<sup>+</sup> Programme, as HEC has launched a series of workshops to create awareness about the opportunities offered under the European Union's Erasmus<sup>+</sup> Programme for higher education institutions, students and staff from the partner countries outside the European Union.   </p><p style="text-align:justify;">Erasmus<sup>+</sup> is an education programme aimed at promoting academic and cultural understanding between the European Countries and Partner Countries. It contributes to the development of human resources, international cooperation, and capacity of higher education institutions across the world by increasing mobility between the EU and other countries. Under the programme, the EU extends opportunities to the students and teaching staff worldwide to go to European institutions to acquire higher education or teach under Erasmus<sup>+</sup> Programme. The programme supports projects, partnerships, events and credit mobility in the areas of education, training, youth and sports. It is characterised by four major components including International Credit Mobility, capacity building projects in the field of higher education based on multiple partnerships, Jean Monnet, and Erasmus Mundus Joint Masters Degrees. It also provides funding opportunities for capacity building and cooperation in all the defined areas. The study scholarships cover an entire Masters degree course, while grants can fund shorter study periods in Europe that can count towards a degree back home. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">As the structure of Erasmus<sup>+</sup> is based on two categories including Programme Countries and Partner Countries, Pakistan being located in Asia region falls under the category of Partner Countries. The budget allocated for the programme funds Erasmus Mundus Joint Master Degrees, scholarships for Master Degree students and staff, scholarships for individuals, capacity-building projects for higher education, and Jean Monnet projects.  </p><p style="text-align:justify;">A higher education institution can send its students, doctoral candidates and staff to a partner higher education institution in a Programme Country. Similarly, individual students and doctoral candidates will also receive funds under a set criteria. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">Dr. Tariq Banuri said the Erasmus<sup>+</sup> Programme is a great opportunity that is under-utilised in Pakistan. "We need to realise the significance of this opportunity and avail ourselves of it in a real sense," he emphasised. He stressed the need for submission of an increased number of research proposals to avail the opportunities under the programme. He observed that the number of research proposals submitted under the programme has marked an increase in the last few years. He stated that HEC wants to have a boost in student and faculty exchange initiatives, as engagement with the world is very fruitful practice to have quality higher education and research. "The more people apply under the programme, the better it is for the country's academic as well as socio-economic prosperity," he underlined. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">In his remarks, Lt. Gen. (Retd.) Muhammad Asghar, Executive Director, HEC said the Erasmus<sup>+</sup> Programme offers tremendous opportunities to Pakistani students, researchers, and faculty members. He emphasised on creating awareness among the academic community and students about the opportunities offered under the programme.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">Earlier, Dr. Mehmood-ul-Hassan Butt, Consultant, HEC briefed the participants about the background and objectives of Erasmus<sup>+</sup> Programme. He urged the universities and faculty members to promote the programme so that maximum people could benefit from it. He said the programme was launched in Pakistan in 2016 and only 35 scholars received scholarships. He maintained that the number of scholarships awardees reached 60 in the following year, adding that 97 scholars have received the scholarships in the current year. He informed the participants that the target for 2019 is to avail 250 scholarships for Masters degree and at least four capacity building institutional grants.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">The workshop was attended by Mr. Waseem S. Hashmi Syed, Adviser, Human Resource Development, HEC, Mr. Athar Osama, Member, Science and Technology, Planning Commission of Pakistan and a large number of faculty members and researchers.</p><p style="text-align:center;">===============</p>05-11-2018 17:11:34<img alt="" src="/english/PublishingImages/ThematicImages/HEC%20ICON-15.png" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />
US-Pakistan Knowledge Corridor (Phase I)US-Pakistan Knowledge Corridor (Phase I)<p style="text-align:center;"><strong>HEC to Provide GRE, TOEFL Training for 6,000 Students to Study in US Varsities        ​</strong></p><p style="text-align:justify;">Islamabad, November 1, 2018: The Higher Education Commission (HEC) will provide coaching to 6,000 candidates of GRE/ TOEFL in collaboration with the United States Education Foundation in Pakistan (USEFP), public sector universities and private sector trainers and firms. The training is part of Talent Farming component of the US-Pakistan Knowledge Corridor.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">The coaching will be provided in various cities of the country to shortlisted candidates intending to seek admission in PhD studies at US universities under the US-Pakistan Knowledge Corridor. HEC is also exploring the possibility of adoption of virtual technology based trainings to facilitate learning of the candidates at their own place. Candidates seeking admissions in PhD studies at US universities need to qualify GRE/ TOEFL tests so as to qualify the basic admission criteria. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">Talent Farming is scheduled four times a year under "Call for GRE Training" at Islamabad and four provincial capitals through three programme components, namely orientation, workshop about higher education in the US, and Five-Week GRE Training. Furthermore, during the current Fiscal Year, GRE Training is underway at University of Agriculture, Faisalabad, which is attended by candidates from four universities within Faisalabad; while, the training sessions have also been started at two other universities, namely University of Azad Jammu & Kashmir, Muzaffarabad, and Mirpur University of Science & Technology, Mirpur, Azad Jammu and Kashmir.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">For provision of such trainings and award of scholarship, HEC considers candidates with excellent academic credentials. The candidates who are trained through HEC-run GRE/ TOEFL coaching classes may either seek HEC funding under this initiative or may directly seek admission opportunities in the US universities. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">The US-Pakistan Knowledge Corridor was conceptualised to significantly increase the number and quality of faculty in country's higher education institutions. It aims to provide opportunities for 10,000 Pakistani scholars over the next 10 years for doctoral studies at US universities.    </p><p style="text-align:justify;">In the 1<sup>st</sup> phase, the project entitled "Ph.D. Scholarship Programme (without tuition fee) under US-Pakistan Knowledge Corridor (Phase-I)" targets at supporting 1,500 PhD scholars at the leading US universities. So far, 31 candidates, who had secured complete fee waivers from US universities, have proceeded for PhD studies. Likewise, 30 more candidates shall be proceeding to US for their PhD studies in the coming Spring-2019 session. So far, 567 candidates have been trained in Orientations; 809 during Workshops, and 330 in Five-Week GRE Training.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">The eligibility criteria for award of HEC scholarship are elaborate and require applicants to have at least 18-years of formal education, International GRE general /GRE subject scores, PhD offer/ admission letter from Ranked Land-Grant US Universities. Nonetheless, the project award is conditional to the fact that the applicant secures a complete tuition fee waiver or TA/RA-ship which covers tuition fee, as the scholarship does not include tuition fee.      </p><p style="text-align:justify;">To ensure timely achievement of the project targets, HEC is at the same time negotiating on Documents of Understanding (DoUs) with US universities with an aim to place cohorts of Pakistanis in ranked US universities. As of now, a total of four DoUs with full-tuition fee waivers have been formalised with ranked US universities including University of Georgia, University of Delaware, University of Houston, and George Washington University. Negotiations with other US universities are underway for tuition fee waiver.      </p><p style="text-align:center;">===============</p>01-11-2018 10:25:38<img alt="" src="/english/PublishingImages/ThematicImages/HEC%20ICON-15.png" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />
Resignation of Executive Director Higher Education CommissionResignation of Executive Director Higher Education Commission<p style="text-align:justify;">Islamabad October 30, 2018: On October 20, 2018, Dr. Arshad Ali, submitted his resignation as Executive Director of HEC with immediate effect. The written resignation letter was received on October 21, 2018. The resignation was accepted by the Commission and he was informed accordingly. As a courtesy, he was allowed to avail one month's leave instead of being required to pay one month's salary in lieu of notice. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">On October 29, 2018 Dr. Arshad Ali appeared to have had a change of heart and submitted a letter seeking for the withdrawal of his letter of resignation and cancellation of leave. Simultaneously, he showed up at the office and demanded to resume his service as the ED. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">The Chairman HEC, who was on ex-Pakistan leave at that time, was informed of the situation. He has directed that while Dr. Ali should be treated with all the deference and courtesy due to a former colleague, he should be informed firmly <strong>(a)</strong> that his resignation had been duly accepted and he was no longer an employee of the HEC, <strong>(b)</strong> that his erratic and illegal behaviour was causing disruption in the functioning of the organisation, <strong>(c)</strong> that he should desist from such behaviour, failing which legal action would be instituted against him. This information has been conveyed to him.</p><p style="text-align:center;">…………………</p><p> </p>31-10-2018 04:44:35<img alt="" src="/english/PublishingImages/ThematicImages/HEC%20ICON-15.png" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />
HEC NACTA Sign Letter of Intent to Collaborate against On-campus ExtremismHEC NACTA Sign Letter of Intent to Collaborate against On-campus Extremism<p style="text-align:justify;">​Islamabad, October 25, 2018: The Higher Education Commission (HEC) and National Counter Terrorism Authority (NACTA) signed a Letter of Intent (LoI) to engage faculty members and students from universities across Pakistan in developing a national strategy to counter on-campus extremism. </p><p style="text-align:justify;">The LoI signing ceremony was held at the Commission Secretariat on Thursday. Lt. Gen. (Retd.) Muhammad Asghar, Acting Executive Director, HEC and Mr. Khaliq Dad, National Coordinator, NACTA signed the LoI on behalf of their organisations. The ceremony was attended by a large number of officers from both the organisations.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">Speaking on this occasion, Lt. Gen. (Retd.) Asghar said that HEC has been very actively promoting the cause of peace at universities. "The HEC has heavily invested on security at universities," he stated. He observed that extremism is an international phenomenon which has impacted major part of the world. He hoped that the partnership between HEC and NACTA will help sensitise students, faculty and the entire academia on the menace of extremism and terrorism. He said the universities play a very vital role in training youth and inculcating a moderate approach to life in their minds. He underlined that Islam is a religion of peace and there is a need for promoting the true teachings of Islam. "We hope HEC and NACTA will work very closely in the years to come address the multidimensional causes of extremism," he concluded.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">Mr. Khaliq Dad appreciated HEC for partnering with NACTA in its efforts to counter extremism and terrorism. He said NACTA devises national anti-terrorism strategies, adding that it carries out research on various aspects of terrorism. He hoped that the HEC-NACTA partnership will help utilise the research conducted related to causes, threats and solutions of terrorism.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">Under the LoI, the HEC and NACTA will carry out research on topics relevant to terrorism and extremism. The HEC will give NACTA online access to research journals on topics pertaining to extremism and terrorism. </p><p style="text-align:justify;"> <span style="background-color:transparent;color:inherit;">…………</span><span style="background-color:transparent;color:inherit;">………………….</span><span style="background-color:transparent;color:inherit;">​</span></p><p style="text-align:justify;">​</p>27-10-2018 17:31:31<img alt="" src="/english/PublishingImages/ThematicImages/HEC%20ICON-15.png" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />





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