IBA, ICAP partnership | AIOU admissions

IBA, ICAP sign pact for new BS degree programme
Karachi, Feb 13: The Institute of Business Administration (IBA) on Tuesday signed partnership collaboration with the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Pakistan (ICAP). The alliance was signed by Dr Ishrat Husain, Dean and Director IBA, and Ahmad Saeed, President ICAP, at the IBA's main campus on University Road.

As a result of this collaboration, IBA is launching its BS (Accounting and Finance) four-year Programme in Fall 2013. After graduating from IBA, the students of BS (Accounting and Finance) will have an opportunity to become Chartered Accountant with an exemption of 4 modules (12 papers) from CA curriculum.

"This is the first time that ICAP is giving exemption to any university, and this programme will be another jewel in the crown of IBA," the director IBA said while speaking at the ceremony.

Dr Ishrat Hussain said: "This is an innovative concept which will have far reaching consequences for improving the quality of accounting and finance professionals while enhancing the employability of graduates.

He said this was a remarkable alliance between a top ranking business school and the leading accountancy body of the country to strengthen the brand of the two partnering institutions. "The IBA can attract a talented chunk of the students by giving them a novel option of pursuing chartered accountancy as a career and the ICAP will get students with a sound academic background prepared at a leading higher education institution," he added.

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Law enforcers, Waderas back in schools for the wrong reasons
Karachi: The future of education in Sindh is being trampled under the combat boots of the law enforcement agencies and the handcrafted chappals of Waderas take the education minister's word for it.

Senior Education Minister Pir Mazharul Haq informed the Sindh Assembly on Tuesday that 92 schools in the province were illegally being used as offices by the law enforcement agencies and Autaqs (guest houses) by feudal lords.

He was responding to the concerns expressed by some lawmakers over the state of affairs of education in Sindh and the Supreme Court's order issued a day earlier that a commission comprising session judges be formed to submit a report on the ghost schools in the province.

The minister explained that the apex court had taken up the issue of the schools under "illegal control", while that of closed and ghost schools was a separate one.

"Not only feudal lords, but the law enforcement agencies have also occupied schools," lamented the minister. "It is a sorry state of affairs and the past regimes are responsible for it."

Hostels and colleges too
Haq said the law enforcement agencies had not only taken over control of schools, but hostel and college buildings too. "The cases of Jinnah Hostel and Mitharam Hostel in Karachi and Muslim Hostel of the historic Noor Muhammad High School in Hyderabad are a few examples."

He said the present government had provided lands to the law enforcement agencies where they could set up their headquarters. "They have promised that they will shift there."

On a sarcastic note, the education minister said if the Supreme Court wanted to "run the government" and session judges could uplift educational standards, the government would be "glad to assist them".

Opposition lawmakers
Underlining the need to differentiate between illegally-occupied schools and closed and ghost schools, Haq said when he took charge as the senior education minister five years ago, he was briefed in his first week that there were 7,700 closed schools in the province.

In an oblique reference to certain opposition lawmakers in the House who had criticised the performance of his ministry, Haq said these schools were closed even when they (the legislators he was referring to) were in the government, while he had made efforts to reopen them.

"It is easy to politicise an issue, but we have to understand the factors behind it. The picture of education in Sindh is very bleak. I want to present the true picture in the House."

Haq alleged that the previous government had constructed 1,100 school buildings, which were not used for the purpose they were built for.

He pointed out that 16 school buildings were constructed during the days of the previous regime in Khaitlari, the village of former chief minister Dr Arbab Ghulam Rahim and the constituency of the Pakistan Muslim League-Likeminded's parliamentary leader in the Sindh Assembly, Abdul Razzak Rahimoon.

Three school buildings were built in another village, Ismail Mangrio, located in the Dhoro Naro area, he added.

"These were not schools. Instead, these buildings were constructed for influential people by the former regime, which destroyed education," Haq maintained.

The minister went on to claim that once when he was having a telephonic conversation with Dr Arbab Ghulam Rahim, the former chief minister had admitted that these schools were built under "political compulsions".

"There is a village where 26 of such school buildings have been constructed. I want to show the mirror to those who are criticising the present government for the state of education," Haq remarked while alluding towards the opposition lawmakers again.

He further said there was a village, Badil Junejo, in Sanghar that only had two houses but a school with three rooms was constructed there by the previous government.

"This school was built merely to get votes in the next elections," alleged the minister. "These 1,100 ghost schools have been 'deleted' by the present government."

The minister then talked about the Pakistan People's Party-led government's efforts including increasing stipends to encourage the education of girls. He said around 45 schools had been upgraded to control the dropout rate. "The main reason for the high dropout rate is that secondary schools are less in number than primary ones."

He said the government wanted to introduce legislation for free and compulsory education and a bill to this effect was pending. The provincial assembly unanimously passed a private resolution moved by PPP's Anwar Ahmed Khan Mahar that urged the government to take effective measures to improve the female literacy ratio and bring it to the level of at least 80 percent by 2015.

Earlier, PPP's Jam Tamachi Unar said many schools had been opened unnecessarily in Sindh. He also claimed that teachers' associations had become a "mafia".

"We, the politicians, are responsible for it as we influence transfers and postings."

Unar proposed that the government should focus on the schools that existed as per the census of 1998 and there must be a girls' school in each area.

MPA Humera Alwani said Pakistan was supposed to achieve 100 percent literacy by 2015 under the UN's Millennium Development Goals. "But it appears that the country will fail not only in that sector, but in the seven other areas of the millennium goals too."

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Students of SEF-run schools protest for funds
Karachi: The students of schools run by the Sindh Education Foundation (SEF) staged a protest outside the Karachi Press Club on Tuesday, demanding the funds which the government had promised for their studies.

"Save our future from darkness" and "regularise our schools", read the placards they held. The 1,300 schools set up by the SEF under the Integrated Education Learning Programme (IELP) are facing financial problems as the education department is delaying the provision of funds it had promised.

Around 150,000 students are enrolled in these schools and 3,500 teachers employed there.

The IELP began in 2009 with the help of foreign donors. Through the programme, individuals were encouraged to open schools in slums on a 16-month contract. The SEF assured that would bear all costs and provide a second grant if the schools were run successfully.

But a year down the line, a closing ceremony was held. The entrepreneurs were informed that the project had officially ended and subsidies till September were paid to them. Much hue and cry was raised for the future of the 150,000 students that was hanging in the balance.

Moreover, the entrepreneurs had leased land and constructed rooms and washrooms as per the SEF requirements. They had gone from house to house to create educational awareness among the local communities.

Now when the fruit of their labour was finally reaping, uncertainty surrounded the release of the second grant. On August 24, a board of governor meeting was held, presided over by Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah and attended by Education Minister Pir Mazharul Haq, Information Minister Sharjeel Memon and SEF Chairman Anita Ghullam Ali.

It was decided that these schools would be regularised and registered under the education department with the compulsory requirement to teach Sindhi language. But four months have passed and no financial support has been extended to the 1,300 schools. The entrepreneurs are scared. "It will shake the confidence of the poor communities who trusted us with their kids, and agreed to have them educated," said an entrepreneur who runs a school in a beggars' community. "Before I went to school, I used to sell goods at traffic signals. It has been a year since I have started studying and can feel the difference. I have started liking school. Now my teacher tells me that our school might close as there are no funds to run it," said a protesting child. The news

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AIOU opens admissions for spring semester
Islamabad: The Allama Iqbal Open University (AIOU) is offering admissions for the spring semester, from Matric to MA/MSc level programmes in different disciplines.

The admission forms and prospectuses of Matric to Master level programmes are available from sale-points of the university's main campus, regional campuses and coordinating offices across the country.

The computerised admission forms have been sent to all the continuing students across the country. Admission forms have also been placed on the university's website to facilitate the students. The admission forms along with the prescribed fee can be submitted in all branches of the Bank AlFalah, Habib Bank, First Women Bank, Allied Bank and in the nominated branches of the National Bank of Pakistan and the Muslim Commercial Bank.

According to the admissions director, admissions for MSc are being offered in mass communication, mathematics, sociology, forestry extension, statistics, chemistry and physics. Admissions for four years BS programmes are being offered in microbiology and chemistry, commonwealth of learning. Admissions for MBA/MPA, MCom and MA are being offered in distance and non-formal education, teacher education, educational planning and management (EPM), special education, library and information sciences, TEFL and history, while the admissions for MEd are being offered in master in education (distance and non-formal education), teacher education, science education and special education.

Admissions for post-graduate diploma programme are being offered in environmental design, EPM, mass communication, computer science, TEFL and youth development work. Admissions for bachelor level, BCom, mass communication, BA, BLIS, FA, ICom, FSc (pre-engineering), FSc (pre-medical), Matric, ATTC, CT, and darse nizami, six-months certificate courses, agricultural courses and three-months short term educational programmes are also being offered.

More information about the admissions for the spring semester can be obtained from the AIOU Admission Department Information Management Unit. app

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PU announces results
Lahore: Punjab University's Examinations Department announced the results of various diploma examinations on Tuesday.

These exams include diploma in Child Health (DCH) annual examination 2009, diploma in Clinical Pathology (DCP) annual examination 2009 and diploma in Gynaecology and Obstetrics (DGO) annual examination 2009.

Detailed results are available on PU website www.pu.edu.pk.

Malaysia varsities: High Commissioner of Malaysia in Pakistan Dr Hasrul Sani bin Mujtabar called on Punjab University (PU) Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Mujahid Kamran at his office on Tuesday.

The meeting discussed various issues of mutual interest. The VC briefed the Malaysian High Commissioner on academic and development activities of the university and stressed the need for enhancing academic collaboration with Malaysian universities.

PU Director External Linkages Maria Maldonado and other officials of the varsity were also present.

Later, the delegation visited PU Main Library and Institute of Business Administration.

Quiz: Punjab University (PU) Directorate of Students Affairs organised "Seerat-un-Nabi (PBUH) Quiz Competition" at the Centre for Undergraduate Studies on Tuesday.

A large number of students from various departments participated in the competitions. Students Madiha Habib and Ayesha Talib of Institute of Biochemistry and Biotechnology secured 1st position, Law College students Touqeer Ahmed and Mehmood Akhtar got 2nd position, Ayesha Ashraf and Iram Mujahid from Department of Botany got 3rd position while a blind student Muhammad Suleman from Institute of Communication Studies got an appreciation award.

The winning students were awarded a sum of Rs 8,000, Rs 6,000, Rs 4,000 and Rs 1,000 cash respectively.

PU centre: Punjab University (PU) has established the National Centre for Resettlement and Rehabilitation (NCRR) at its Institute of Social and Cultural Studies in collaboration with the World Bank.

According to a press release, the centre will act as a national think-tank to conduct academic research, organise training programmes and provide policy guidelines for the resettlement and rehabilitation challenges faced by development induced involuntary displacements in Pakistan.

A delegation consisted of World Bank Development Specialist Chaohua Zhang along with Dean Faculty of Behavioral and Social Sciences and Director ISCS Prof Dr Muhammad Zakria Zakar, NESPK's Environment and Resettlement specialist Irfan-ul-Haq and other senior faculty members of ISCS met Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Mujahid Kamran in his office in this regard.

The VC said that PU was not just an academic institution but a vital and vibrant state institution fully cognizant of development needs and challenges of Pakistani society.

Arabic course: A three-month course in Arabic language has been launched by the Government College University's Arabic and Islamic Studies Department.

Admissions to the course will begin from February 18, 2013 and the classes will begin from March 4. Vice Chancellor Prof Rahman said GCU would introduce more such short courses for students.

Meanwhile, the GCU Debating Society won the trilingual declamation contest 2013, organised by the Fatima Jinnah Medical College (FJMC) on Tuesday.

The GCU orators outshined their competitors from 25 educational institutions in Urdu, English and Punjabi debates.

GCU students Hassan Virk, Khwaja Yasin and Zahid Ali secured distinctions in the contest. The team of GCU also lifted the team trophy.

LCWU job fair
Lahore College for Women University (LCWU) has announced first-ever job fair 2013 in the last week of February.

In this regard, a meeting of top employers was held in the syndicate room on Tuesday, which was attended by CEOs, Directors, as well as HR officials of various leading companies.

LCWU Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Sabiha Mansoor chaired the meeting and gave a detailed orientation. The meeting focused on enhancing industrial linkages, identifying gaps inhibiting employability of women graduates and promotion of economic empowerment. The vice chancellor also announced a student endowment fund.

About 30 corporate sector companies participated in the top employers' meeting who also registered to set up stall at the upcoming job fair.

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GCUF Layyah campus to launch distance learning programmes
Faisalabad: Government College University Faisalabad, Layyah Campus will launch Distance Learning Programmes.

It was decided at the eleventh meeting of the Academic Council, GCUF. Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Zakir Hussain presided over the meeting. Registrar Muhammad Ayub, GCUF Deans Dr Muhammad Shahbaz Arif, Dr Naureen Aziz Qureshi, Dr Hafeez-ur-Rehman Tahir, Dr Pervez Azeem, Senior Advisor HR Shiekh Akram, Director Admin Muhammad Mushtaq and other head of departments, directors and other notables were present. The vice chancellor said various distance learning programmes on GCUF main campus (Faisalabad campus) were also already functioning. He said, "We are lagging far behind from the developed nations in the higher education." He said that distance learning education was the best tool in current scenario to increase post-graduated manpower. He said distance learning helps cope with the increasing demand of education. The people, who can not avail higher education because of their jobs and other factors, can get benefit from the system. He said the university is ranked sixth best university of the country and they were promoting the research culture to meet the demand of modern era. He directed the meeting to ensure quality education at the campus at par with the developed nations to cope with the challenges. He said that to meet the demand of the increasing enrolments at the campus, new campus is being set up that will be completed within two years. The meeting also approved new Associate Degree Programmes. The news

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