LAHORE: Students across the country should be taught a single syllabus to provide them equal opportunities, Imran Khan said on Saturday.
He was addressing the second convocation ceremony of the NAMAL College, Mianwali, at Royal Palm Golf and Country Club. Students from the NAMAL College and the Shaukat Khanum Memorial Cancer Hospital and Research Centre (SKMCH&RC) were awarded degrees.
“Ending injustice in our educational system is the need of the hour. There should be a level-playing field for students,” Khan said.
He said the youth from the less-privileged segments of society had a great desire to excel and achieve lofty goals.
“There is abundant talent in our rural areas… many are unable to make their mark due to a lack of resources,” Khan said.
He said that in Pakistan, 0.8 million children go to English-medium schools, 2.4 million attend madrassahs and 30 million go to Urdu-medium schools. He said those studying in Urdu-medium schools found it difficult to compete with students from English-medium schools.
He said many institutions in Pakistan suffered due to ambiguous power structures. He said institutions should be made autonomous to obtain better results. He said most governments failed to deliver due to political interference in national institutions.
“National institutions should be able to make their decisions free from any pressure.”
Khan said becoming a prime minister was of no importance to him. “Real achievement for me will be bringing the NAMAL College to a par with the Oxford University,” he said.
“It is a matter of pride for me that 20 students have graduated in first division from the Bradford University [a NAMAL partner]. Our institution is for those who cannot afford studying at Bradford.”
Khan said the youth made up 60 per cent of the country’s population. If they were provided quality education, they could help take the economy’s growth rate to up to 20 per cent, he said.
He said big goals could not be achieved overnight. He said road to success was a roller-coaster ride. He said education helped one analyse situations analytically.
He thanked Namal College VC Abdul Razzaq Dawood for his efforts.
College Director Alison Darnbrough told The Express Tribune working with talented students at the college had been an amazing experience.
“Contrary to the popular perception, these students were fast learners.” She said 300 students from 56 districts were studying at the college, bringing great diversity to the student body.
She said nine PhD faculty members were teaching at the campus. The culture of research was on the rise, she said. Earlier, the graduates were awarded the University of Bradford degrees in computer science, software engineering and electrical engineering. SKMCH&RC students were awarded degrees in medical imaging.
Published in The Express Tribune, December 14th, 2014.