GRE condition for PhD canceled | Universities' problems
Quaid-i-Azam University (QAU) canceled GRE condition for PhD students
Islamabad, Jan 03: The Academic Council of Quaid-i-Azam University (QAU) has
scrapped the restriction of passing GRE as a necessary requirement for the award
of a PhD degree.
The restriction was imposed by the Higher Education
Commission (HEC) despite the opposition of almost all public sector
universities, including the QAU. The condition was opposed by 25 members and
only 12 favoured it after a heated debate, while some of the members did not
cast their votes.
Another agenda item stipulating 18-credit hours
mandatory courses for doctoral students was deferred for the next meeting. The
compulsion was imposed by the HEC despite an opposition by universities and the
Federation of All Pakistan Universities Academic Staff Associations.
meeting recommended a five-day week for classes. A final decision will be taken
by the syndicate in this respect. Professor Sky Hawk, director of the Taxila
Institute of Asian Civilisations, informed the meeting that the German
government is willing to support PhD students from AJK, Northern Areas and
Balochistan for research.
Participants of the meeting offered 'fateha'
for the departed souls of QAU Professor Emeritus Dr. A H Dani, Dr. Naseer Ahmad
of Mathematics Department and Professor Nasir Mahmood of Administrative Sciences
VCs form group to resolve universities' problems
Islamabad: Vice-chancellors of all government universities of the federal
capital have formed a group to resolve the problems of their respective
This was disclosed by Vice-Chancellor Allama Iqbal Open
University (AIOU) Prof Dr Mehmood-ul-Hasan Butt while addressing a meeting of
the General Body of University Welfare Association here.
of the new-formed group of the VCs, he said it would make consultation on
affairs like sending of property tax notices by Capital Development Authority
(CDA) to government universities.
He lauded the administration, teachers
and students of AIOU for utilising their resources in the best interest of the
varsity, adding that work has been started to recommend proposals for the
promotion of workers and teachers.
The AIOU VC said that facilities like
the welfare of employees, provision of medical facilities after retirement and
other amenities are being provided to workers, officers and teachers. He also
appreciated the services of those officers, who have retired recently, prayed
for their health and prosperity, and hoped these officers would continue
facilitating this national institution in the light of their vast experience. On
this occasion, VC AIOU Dr Mehmood-ul-Hasan Butt and President Officers Welfare
Association Malik Muhammad Munir distributed gifts and shields among the
retiring officers. The News
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The student transport quagmire
One of the things by which governments' commitment to education of their citizens can be
judged is the policy on student transport which determines accessibility of
their people to education.
Here in Islamabad, male students are often
seen riding dangerously on the rooftops, footboards and back bumpers of public
buses – a scene often captured in newspaper photographs and blamed on
insufficient public buses and an inefficient public transport.
students are also often seen spilling hazardously on the sides and medians of
some major roads after school or college trying to catch public transport or
hitch a ride home. This problem is most evident on the portion of Islamabad
Highway adjoining H-8 sector, which houses a couple of male public educational
These two scenarios are not only pointers at our failure to
inculcate a safety culture in our society but also reflections of the importance
(or lack of it) which we attach to education and to our children's
The repercussion: the death of a student in a recent hit-and-run
accident on Islamabad Highway, apart from many near accidents of the sort
The concerned authorities instead of putting their heads together
and solving the transport problem of students, have apparently thrown the ball
into the court of the general public. The Islamabad Traffic Police (ITP) last
week made a civic appeal to motorists to give these students on the roads a
lift, their easy travel to and from their educational institutions described as
Elsewhere abroad, the responsibility for student
transport lies with the government. Many countries/states have specific student
transport programmes to assist families with education by providing
accessibility and easing transport costs, but encouraging the general public to
oblige students hitching rides is definitely not one of these
In welfare state Britain, public transport is free for all
under-18 students and students who are above 18 are entitled 33 per cent
discount on public transport fares.
In the Australian state of New South
Wales, the School Student Transport Scheme, which provides free travel for
school students on rail, bus, ferry and long distance coach services, began
decades ago as a way to make sure rural kids get to school but it was later
extended to city kids.
The Australian Capital Territory (Canberra) had
introduced the Student Transport Programme in 2002 which provides eligible
primary, high school and college students with free travel on
More recently, the Australian states of Victoria and Northern
Territory have also announced plans to make public transport free for all
children and full time students.
Bermuda also recently made travel on
public buses and ferries free for its students.
The effectiveness of such
schemes is of course dependent on reliable and efficient public transport
In North America on the other hand, student transportation is
handled by the Student Transportation of America, under which more than 475,000
yellow school buses transport millions of students to and from school each
In Islamabad, students studying in government schools and colleges –
especially primary students and girl school/college students – have long
benefited from the familiar blue-coloured buses of the school/college bus
transport scheme run by the ministry of education.
According to a recent
report, over 150 such buses ply in Islamabad under this scheme but over 150 more
buses are said to be needed to ensure that most if not all students, especially
students from boys' schools and colleges, are also catered to.
At the end
of last year, the Islamabad Traffic Police initiated a move to try and solve the
student transport problem by holding consultations with the federal territory's
education and transport authorities as well as with the administrations of
various government colleges, especially those in H-8 and H-9 sectors. Nothing
concrete seems to have emerged from these consultations, judging by the ITP's
appeal last week to motorists to give students a lift.
school/college buses are procured for students in boys schools and male colleges
or alternatively, more public buses are deployed on the roads, especially on the
routes of boys' schools and male colleges, it will be a futile task for the ITP
to crack the whip on bus rooftop and footboard travel.
transport and accessibility problems can only be solved if we are really
concerned about the future of our youth and committed to assisting families with
education and encouraging our young people to achieve the very best they
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Two students honoured at fifth Intel National Science Olympiad 2009
Peshawar: Two students from Pak-Turk International Schools & Colleges were
declared grand winners at the fifth Intel National Science Olympiad 2009 held in
A press release issued by the Turkish international
non-governmental organisation Monday said the two winners would represent
Pakistan at Nevada, United States in 2009 Intel International Science and
The competition was organised by Intel Education
Initiative in collaboration with the Ministry of Education where 250 projects of
students were found worthy of competing in the national final.
A jury of
experts declared Malik Usama and Salahuddin Khan as toppers in the category of
the grand winners and both would participate in subsequent US
It may be added here that the competition organisers had
been aiming at encouraging secondary and higher secondary students (9-12) to
find solution to global and local challenges of modern life by means of
scientific knowledge and inventive insight through such competitions since 2004.
Salahuddin Khan of Pak-Turk institute Peshawar branch was awarded as
grand winner in Chemistry category with his project 'Ocean is Precious' while
Malik Usama of Khairpur branch for his 'Effects of Mixed Culture' project.
Intel ISEF is a global convention of 1,200 students from 40 countries.
The competitions were held to seek innovative and positive scientific solutions
to global problems. Intel ISEF distributes more than 900 awards amounting to $3
Khyber Medical University (KMU) announced BSc results'
Peshawar: The Khyber Medical University (KMU) has announced annual results for BSc (Part-II) examinations. A
notification issued here Monday said 19 out of 24 students were declared
successful, while the overall result was 79.20 per cent. Saima, a student of the
Pakistan Institute of Community Ophthalmology, topped the examination obtaining
519 marks out of 640. Muhammad Arshad stood 2nd with 486 marks and Asmatullah
grabbed 3rd position by securing 484. The News
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