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Higher Education Development Project Holds 8th Steering Committee Meeting.

At the Higher Education Commission (HEC) Secretariat in Islamabad. The Higher Education Development in Pakistan (HEDP) project of HEC convened. Its eighth meeting of the Steering Committee (SC).

Senior representatives from federal ministries, provincial departments of higher education. Vice-chancellors, and private sector representatives make up the SC, the project’s highest forum.

Implementing important higher education priorities. HEC’s $400 million national flagship project, HEDP, will run for five years, from 2019–20 to 2023–2024. The members of the Committee went over the project’s current status.

Dr. Zia Ul-Qayyum, Executive Director of HEC, presided over the meeting. And stated that HEDP is an essential investment for higher education. Because it helps HEC with capacity building, IT initiatives, research, and quality assurance. Furthermore, he said,

With the recent World Bank mission raising the project rating. I’m happy to report that HEDP is doing well, achieving 81% of its goals.

Dr. Mehmood ul Hassan Butt, the Project Coordinator for HEDP. Provided an overview of the project, including its plans. History, and latest World Bank mission. Which raised the project’s rating to satisfactory in seven components.

Which Major Projects Have Been Discussed In The Meeting?

They are informing the Committee of the major project initiatives. Including the financial and physical advancements he and his team did. Furthermore, the project is nearing its conclusion. And the team is collaborating closely with HEC representatives. Because HEC employees will eventually take these over to continue these initiatives.

The project’s technical heads provided members with updates. On the status of each of their components. To resolve Pakistan’s current financial difficulties by promoting industry-academy collaborations. To enable import substitutions. Component 1 recently finished awarding 10 Rapid Technology Transfer Grants (RTTG).

The organization is also working on compiling the results. And effects of the grants given out in prior years in terms of research publications, honours. Awards, and creative concepts or products created.

The Component 2 team recently finished training faculty members of affiliated colleges. Throughout Pakistan in general pedagogy and establishing 41 Quality Enhancement Cells. In Affiliated Colleges (QECACs). To help implement the new HEC QA policy, it is also collaborating closely with the HEC QAA division.

The head of the IT component briefed the members on the ambitious plans and activities. Which included the allied computing and storage facilities for HEIs. The Data Center, the Student Life Cycle System, and Enterprise Resource Management.

While some of these are currently in the final stages of procurement. Others have already received approval. Together with other efforts to increase professional capacity. The project has helped NAHE conduct studies on faculty training. Needs assessment in Punjab and Sindh.

What Are The Thoughts Of The Members Of the Committee About Higher Education?

Members of the Committee gave insightful recommendations. And expressed gratitude for the HEDP team’s work. Financial autonomy and related mitigation strategies. For revenue generation models were suggested. In response to the discussion of Pakistan’s higher education. Sector’s lack of public funding. Under Component 6, over 100 HEIs received significant financial support. To become self-sustaining, as informed to members.

However, to capitalize on their intellectual capital and forge market-industry partnerships. The investment proposals that HEIs have submitted need to be strengthened even more. The participants also discussed the dire circumstances that Affiliated Colleges (ACs). Face in their areas. They supported collaboration with provincial departments. And proposed improving project activities for local needs.

Regarding IT and quality assurance initiatives, the Committee recommended. Creating sustainability plans and expressed gratitude for the project’s efforts.

Muhammad Imran
Muhammad Imran
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