Under the Oxford Pakistan Program (OPP), students and faculty members from Pakistan will now receive visiting fellowships and graduate scholarships at the University of Oxford.
The initiative is supported by the High Commission for Pakistan in London, Oxford University and the British High Commission in Islamabad. The OPP program was inaugurated at an event at the Pakistani embassy in London.
The program aims to promote activities related to Pakistan at the University of Oxford. It also wishes to encourage needy and high performing graduate students through scholarships. With visiting fellowships for faculty members from Pakistani universities, OPP will help universities in training their faculty members to a higher degree! Special lectures will also be delivered on Pakistan at Oxford.
The Pakistani community in the UK and Pakistani businessmen have contributed £500,000 for the cause considering it a great opportunity for future leaders.
The university officials from Oxford have stressed on the fact that many renowned leaders from Pakistan, like Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, Liaquat Ali Khan, Benazir Bhutto and Imran Khan (current PM of Pakistan) have studied at the University of Oxford. Therefore it’s important to promote the heritage and the link between Pakistan and Oxford.
Professor Adeel Malik, Academic lead of OPP and a faculty member at Oxford, expressed his concerns about the narrow image of Pakistan. He stated that the country has paid a huge price for the lack of democracy but is still on its way to progress with its tech industry attracting international attention.
Malala Yousafzai, a supporter of this initiative and education in Pakistan, especially for girls, announced a new scholarship for girls from underdeveloped backgrounds. She stated that one girl will be admitted every year under the special scholarship.