Symbolic, yet Powerful Reform: PM House Converted into a University
The Islamabad National University (INU) was launched at Prime Minister (PM) House on Friday.
The conference aims to focus on how the new university will help in addressing emerging challenges and converting them into opportunities.
Initially, the Institute of Advanced Studies (IAS) will be established at this university. The institute will build relevant in-house research teams, which in turn will engage and collaborate with researchers and research institutions within the country and overseas. In particular, it will collaborate with and guide various centres of advanced studies established by the Higher Education Commission (HEC) in recent years. Subsequently, in order to sustain and enhance the quality of research programmes, INU will initiate PhD level programmes in critical fields and focus on using the research impact on socio-economic development.
Speaking on the occasion, the PM said that this university will not just be a symbolic representation of what ?we envisage for our youth but also become a centre which will provide research based guidance for all the social, economic as well as institutional challenges. There is no second opinion that nations cannot progress without quality education in general and particularly higher education. We have everything for us in the governance system of Riasat-e-Medina. It was that great vision which helped Muslims become great academics and researchers for many centuries?.
Shedding light on his vision to turn PM House into a world-class university, he said the government is committed to remove colonial legacy of grandeur and promote simplicity.
?We will create awareness among the masses so that they can protect their rights.?
The PM emphasised that human development is the major means of national and social prosperity.
?This university will be an autonomous entity and will function without any government intervention. It will take a start from a very good institution, maintain its progress and turn into a centre of excellence which will attract scholars from across the world to help find solutions to national and global problems,? he said this while referring to the House of Wisdom, a major Abbasid academy set up by Khalifa Haroonur Rasheed. He stressed the need for efforts to ensure the rise of downtrodden segments of society, which he said is impossible without quality education.
Pointing out the financial crisis facing the country, he assured that the government will fully support the growth of higher education. He said the money recovered through the government?s accountability drive will be channelised for meeting educational goals.
Earlier in his welcome address, Education & Professional Training Minister Shafqat Mahmood appreciated HEC for its efforts to promote higher education and research. He underscored that the establishment of INU is a step towards fulfillment of government?s commitment to make best public use of the lavish government estates.
?INU is envisioned as an apex institution designed to support research-based policy formulation,? he said.
Published in?Daily Times,?December 22nd?2018.