After a rigorous 19-week course, the 32nd batch of bright young women received their graduation certificates from PAF Finishing School on Tuesday.
The graduation ceremony, held at the officers’ mess, exemplified the grace and discipline that marks the cornerstone of the school, as future career women and homemakers took their seats without a crease on their pink uniforms or a wisp of hair out of place.
Addressing the ceremony, Vice Chief of the Air Staff Air Marshall Farhat Hussain Khan said it is essential for our daughters to develop themselves with poise and dignity to reflect the aspirations of a Pakistani girl.
“In an age where the dialect of media, rapid dissemination of knowledge and instant need for communication has revolutionised our lifestyles, these women are undoubtedly benefitting from a specialised institution that prepares them to cope with this complexity,” he added.
Valedictorian Zahra Osama addressed the gathering of beaming parents and faculty members, during which she emphasised that the ceremony was just a beginning as graduates went on to dip their feet into the real world with their skills and confidence at hand.
“This ending marks a new beginning to the road of never-ending success for all of us,” she remarked.
The academy teaches women self-grooming, nutrition and hygiene, cooking, table-etiquettes, interior design, public speaking and traditional values.
At the same time, women receive painstaking survival training through exercises in tent-pegging, outdoor cooking, camouflage, disaster-management, fire-fighting and basic car-mechanics among other such precedent skills. The academy also strives to dismiss the age-old notion of finishing schools as mere producers of domestic clones.
These young women are exposed to art, culture, politics and religion through lectures and workshops and are encouraged to read, write and express their opinions in a forceful but polite way.
Established in 1996, the academy has so far groomed 812 young women.
Published In The Express Tribune, June 21st, 2012.