The Higher Education Commission of Pakistan in collaboration with the LUMS Development Office, arranged a get together and interactive session of USAID Merit and Needs-Based Scholarship Program (MNBSP) alumni and scholars at the LUMS campus on February 8, 2018.
Students and alumni from various batches actively participated in the event. External guests present at the ceremony included Ms. Lea Swanson (Provincial Director USAID), Mr. Haroon Raheem (Sr. Education Advisor USAID), Mr. Waseem Syed Hashmi (Advisor HRD, HEC) and Mr. Rao Azhar (Project Director USAID MNBSP). Participants from LUMS included Dr. Shahid Masud (Dean Syed Babar Ali School of Science & Engineering), Mr. Yasser Hashmi (Dean Student Affairs), Mr. Zunair Zafar (Head of Finance & Accounts) and Mr. Anjum Fayyaz.
The guests were received and welcomed by USAID MNBSP beneficiaries, Dr. Shahid Masud and Mr. Yasser Hashmi. Dr. Masud, in his inaugural speech, gave the guests a brief introduction of LUMS, its need blind admission policy and maintaining its standards of academic excellence. He also appreciated the USAID for believing in the LUMS cause of education for all.
Mr. Waseem Syed Hashmi, in his address, admired the strict merit based admission policy of LUMS and acknowledged the efforts of USAID to provide equal opportunities and quality education to Pakistani citizens. Ms. Lea Swanson, in her inspirational speech, told the audience that the cause of providing equitable opportunities of education to underprivileged is very close to her heart and expressed her gratitude at seeing the impact that the program has had on the lives of its alumni and students – some of whom were the first in their families to be able to study at a university.
Two current beneficiaries of USAID MNBSP at LUMS expressed their views about the scholarship program. They shared with the audience, their touching stories of challenges faced by them during their studies and explained what significance the USAID scholarship has in their lives.
Ms. Swanson and Mr. Syed distributed scholarship award certificates among eight meritorious and needy Master’s level students of LUMS selected under USAID MNBSP. The session concluded with an informal networking session over tea.