ISLAMABAD - Federal Minister for Planning and Development Ahsan Iqbal has said that education sector, especially higher education, will be given special attention by the present government. He was speaking as chief guest at opening ceremony of the career orientation workshop for graduating scholars, organised under the auspices of HEC-USAID Merit and Needs Based Scholarship Programme held at HEC secretariat on Thursday.
Dr Mukhtar Ahmed, Executive Director HEC, Thomas LeBlanc, Director Education, USAID, and Ahmed Bakhsh Lehri, Secretary Education and Training were also present on the occasion.
The workshop on career orientation was attended by scholarship beneficiaries and alumni from 11 partner universities/institutions of the HEC-USAID programme with the aim to improve communication and interview skills of the graduating scholars and provide them guidance to groom their personal and professional skills and better job searching.
The minister appreciated the initiative of HEC and USAID for launching merit and needs-based scholarship, which enabled thousands of students to pursue higher education. Congratulating the graduates, he said, "You are venturing into a new phase of life where you will face a number of challenges but conviction hard work are the keys to a successful life."
Ahsan Iqbal said that 21st century marks an era of paradigm shift. "Only those nations will develop who have superior knowledge and brain power. We must know that this is the age of knowledge economy. I believe Pakistan is full of potential human resource and if managed properly, we can compete any developing nation in the world."
Dr Mukhtar Ahmed informed the audience that thousands of students have been selected on merit and sent to top higher education institutions of the world. He emphasised that government's commitment was necessary for development of higher education in the country.