‘Universities in dire need of money’

Prof Khalid Aftab says on Monday that the university will never leave its deserving students in the lurch.

Express September 21, 2010

LAHORE: The Government College University (GCU) Endowment Fund has initiated 24 scholarships for the deserving students to be awarded on merit every year. This year scholarships worth Rs11.666 million were given from the university’s budget.

Vice Chancellor Prof Khalid Aftab said on Monday that the university will never leave its deserving students in the lurch.

Prof Aftab said that the public sector universities were facing financial crisis and were in dire need of generating funds from their own resources. He said that the options available to the universities included fee raises, industry funding and finding donors for building the endowment funds.

He said that the university’s preference was attaining industry funding for research and endowment funds.  He said that the universities all over the world had endowment funds built with help from their alumni. “Harvard University has an endowment fund of about $37billion. Even a relatively small university like the University of Virginia has an endowment fund of $3.219 billion,” he added.

He said that the GCU Endowment Fund had generated Rs50 million with the help of Old Ravians and philanthropists. “I know it is not a big amount, but I believe the day would come when the Endowment Fund would be strong enough to support the university’s development projects.” he said.

A Higher Education Commission (HEC) team led by Dr Riaz Ahmed Qureshi visited GCU on Monday to discuss issues related to scholarships and financial aid to the students. He said that the HEC was trying to arrange scholarships for the deserving students country wide with the help of international donors. Dr Qureshi said that supporting a youth in education meant changing the life of the whole family.

Published in The Express Tribune, September 21st, 2010.


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