The University of Karachi is the only university in Pakistan to participate in the Erasmus Mundus Europe Asia project and seven graduate and undergraduate students and staff members have been selected to receive its scholarships.
With aims to create a partnership in research and education to strengthen ties between Europe and Asia, the project will provide students a chance to pursue research and studies at European universities.
The seven affiliates include Waqas Uddin Khan from the Bio Chemistry department, Jalaluddin Aminuddin from Chemistry and staff members, Waqas Ahmed, Adeel Ahmed and Syeda Afshan. The undergrads who made the list were Faryal Pervaiz Haq, from the Karachi University Business School, and Syed Shibli from Computer Science.
Each student will get to spend anywhere between one month and 21 months, depending on their courses. The universities to choose from include the University of Warsaw, Poland, University of Dublin Ireland, Pierre and Marie Curie University France, University College Dublin, University of Vienna, Austria, the University of Amsterdam, and the University of Milan, Italy. The European Union selected KU to participate in the consortium project in September 2011, under the supervision of vice-chancellor Prof Dr Pirzada Qasim Raza Siddiqui.
Sweden, Italy, Poland, UK, Ireland, France, Austria, and the Netherlands are the eight European countries that participate in the consortium, while the five Asian nations are Pakistan, India, China, Nepal, and Bangladesh.
Students were selected on the basis of their academic excellence and were asked to show their English-language proficiency by sending in their TOEFL scores. A special ceremony was held at the campus on Friday to confer award letters to the candidates. Dr Pirzada Qasim praised the students, labelling them as “ambassadors of Pakistan.”
“These scholarships prove that Karachi University’s education standard is equivalent to foreign universities,” he proudly said. Dr Siddiqui thanked the pro-vice-chancellor, Shahana Urooj Kazmi, and Board of Advanced Studies and Research’s Ziauddin Sheikh and Maria Khan for helping the students achieve the scholarships.
Dr Kazmi, who is also the project coordinator, said Lund University of Sweden initiated the project. “The project would be used as a platform to strengthen academic cooperation and emphasis would be placed on capacity building aspects, which include the universities’ ability to handle international mobility and large international cooperation projects,” said the pro-vice-chancellor.
Prioritised areas of study consist of environmental issues, public health, social welfare, international law and human rights. Nearly 106 individuals are provided the opportunity to become acquainted with graduates and undergraduates, PhDs and post-doctoral students through the project.
The students can choose from these places:
University of Warsaw, Poland
University of Dublin, Ireland
Pierre & Marie Curie University, France
University College Dublin
University of Vienna, Austria
University of Amsterdam
University of Milan, Italy
Published in The Express Tribune, June 13th, 2011.