Education and exposure are two key pillars that hold immense importance in shaping the lives of individuals and driving societal progress. Together, these elements empower individuals to become informed global citizens, capable of making meaningful contributions to their communities and the world at large. The transformative power of education and exposure lies in their ability to unlock untapped potential, ignite curiosity, and inspire lifelong learning. With these values and mission at its heart, the Rhodes Trust has been working with students around the world, including in Pakistan to give them access to these opportunities through the Rhodes Scholarship.
For over a century, the Rhodes Trust has served as a beacon of hope and opportunity for countless young minds across the globe. This year the Rhodes Trust is celebrating the 75th anniversary of Scholars from Pakistan and their impact during that time has been nothing short of remarkable.
The Rhodes Scholarship was establishedin Pakistan in 1948, just a year after the country gained independence. It was a critical time for Pakistan, as the nation sought to establish itself and build its educational infrastructure. Access to the Scholarshipbrought a fresh wave of opportunities for Pakistani students, enabling them to pursue higher education at Oxford University, one of the world’s most prestigious universities.
The Scholarships provided by the Trust have allowed exceptional individuals to access world-class education, expand their horizons, and develop into influential leaders in various fields.These individuals are granted the chance to study at Oxford University, where they receive unparalleled academic exposure and engage with distinguished faculty members.
The Rhodes Trust also places a strong emphasis on leadership qualities and encourages Scholars to make a positive impact in their communities. Scholars are provided with numerous opportunities for personal and professional development which help students cultivate their leadership potential and empower them to bring about meaningful change upon their return to Pakistan.
Rhodes Scholars from Pakistan have gone on to become influential figures in various spheres. They have excelled in fields such as academia, public service, law, medicine, entrepreneurship, and social activism. The Scholars bring back their enriched academic knowledge and international exposure to their home country, leveragingtheir expertise and leadership skills to drive positive change and shape the future of Pakistan.
One such exceptional and impactful scholar from Pakistan is Muhammad Hamza Waseem. Hailing from Lahore, he is currently pursuing a DPhil in Physics at the University of Oxford. He co-founded Spectra—an online magazine aimed at nurturing popular science writers in Pakistan. He has also participated in high-profile physics outreach activities in Oxford, such as the Marconi Van exhibition, Physics Lab to Life, Stargazing Oxford, Pint of Science Festival, and IF Oxford Science + Ideas Festival. Hamza is currently helping develop a course to make quantum physics education more inclusive and accessible for everyone.For science popularisation and outreach, Hamza has been awarded the 2021 Diana Award and a High Commendation at the2021South East Physics Network (SEPnet) Public Engagement Awards.
As the Rhodes Trust marks its 75th anniversary in Pakistan, it is evident that its journey has been one of immense success and significance. Through its Scholarship program, the Trust has empowered Pakistani students to pursue academic excellence, develop their leadership skills, and become catalysts for positive change in their communities and the world at-large.
The impact of the Rhodes Trust extends far beyond individual Scholars, as it continues to shape the trajectory of Pakistan’s progress and contribute to a brighter future.