Yet the education has miserably failed to produce the quality
Leadership essentially needed for nation building
Interview with Mr Wasif Rizvi – President & CEO, Habib University
As Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Habib University Foundation, Wasif Rizvi is leading conceptualization, design and management of Habib University. Under his leadership, Habib University has initiated several youth development projects from the Foundation’s platform.
Before joining the Habib University Foundation, Wasif Rizvi served as General Manager at Aga Khan Education Service’s programs in various schools. He helped developing the institute for Development Studies and Practices in Quetta, and Shikshantar, an institute set up in India to rethink the foundations of education and development in South Asia.
Mr. Wasif Rizvi holds a Master’s degree, where he was in charge of conceptualizing designing and implementing educational development in International Education from Harvard University. His special interests include religion and indigenous philosophies and their influence in shaping social, political and economic process in Middle Eastern and Indian cultures.
Nation building is the key responsibility of the educational sector, which is supposed to produce quality leadership requirement to accomplish the noble task of nation building, strengthening foundation of socio, human, and religious values –essentially needed for nation building and to achieve desirable growth and development of a progressive society.
These observations were made by Wasif Rizvi, President and CEO of Habib University in an interview at the impressive premises of the university, a center of excellence aimed at making a difference in the field of education.
PAGE: Do you think that Habib university is well equipped to fill the vacuum of leadership by producing quality graduates, would you like to elaborate how you are going to bridge this gap?
WASIF RIZVI: Actually challenges are met with an unshakable resolve to serve the nation and I feel that we need to a recommitment to the nation as well as country for the cause of nation building. At Habib University Foundation we have done our best for devising the curricula relevant to our own environment with a target to develop a frame of mind of the students that are proud to be a Pakistani and they should not be shy of using their native languages in conversation with anybody with special focus on national language ‘Urdu’ as one of the subjects.
Habib University Foundation has put a world class faculty in place as we recognize that role of learning and teaching without research and in-depth mentoring is redundant. That is why we use an intellectually stimulating and interactive pedagogy to push students to be more curious and think out of the box.
Habib University faculty comprises a brilliant group of individuals who are passionate about teaching, conducting research and fostering a learning environment for the campus community. We are a truly global community, hailing from across the world — USA, UK, France and Germany to name just a few. They are internationally qualified having studied and taught at prestigious institutions such as Columbia, Stanford and Comell. All faculties hold a PhD in their discipline and are noted experts in their respective fields. I hope that the first batch of our young leaders will come into practical life they are believed to make a change in the society and this flow of leaders will certainly serve the cause of nation building in the days to come, we are confident.
PAGE: At present majority of the quality students who can afford to study abroad they prefer to travel outside Pakistan, while the foreign students are also not seeking admission in Pakistan universities, don’t you think it reflects the unimpressive state of our higher education institutions in Pakistan?
WASIF RIZVI: As far as Pakistani students are concerned, it’s a failure of the part of our education system in creating a sense of love and respect and commitment to the nation and that is why they are attracted by foreign universities. There is no doubt that higher education institutions abroad have achieve high degree of excellence, however, Pakistan is also not lagging behind and gradually coming up to mark, in fact it is matter of security concerns, which does not permit to allow foreign students at our universities, otherwise there would be an influx of foreign students seeking admission in our universities as soon as we overcome the security issue in Pakistan.
PAGE: There is a feeling that commercialization has set in the noble profession of education focusing more on profit making, which is one of the causes for keeping the lower or even middle income groups away from the ambit of quality education, would you like to comment on commercialization in education sector?
WASIF RIZVI: Actually using the term commercialization for education is not a proper way to analyze the situation. You see the public and private sector go together hand-in-hand all over the world to provide high quality education, while the financial support is equally distributed among the public and private sector institutions without any discrimination.
Actually when we say commercialization of education we in fact desire to make comments on the arrival of private institutions in the education sector. When we look at the performance of public and private sector institutions right from school level to higher education institutions we find that majority are being run in the public sector while the state of education and quality of education in the public sector is so obvious, which need not to be emphasized. “Let the education sector grow either public or private the issue is to achieve the first and foremost goal of nation building which calls for recommitment to the nation.”
Habib University, providing world-class Liberal Arts and Sciences Education in Pakistan.
Habib University remains the hub of Liberal Arts and Sciences Education in Pakistan, ever since its inception in 2014. Offering a truly transformative and evolved learning experience, it is an institution that truly redefines higher education in the country and its nearby regions.
The university operates through the fulfillment of its core philosophy, derived from the Arabic word ‘Yohsin’, this term broadly defines the notions of thoughtful self-cultivation, grounded on the five values of Excellence, Beauty, Passion, Respect and Service.
The aim that Habib University wants to achieve through the aforementioned virtues and a comprehensive, interdisciplinary curriculum, is to produce critically-conscious, ambitious and determined graduates who build a name for themselves individually, and positively impact their society.
The first batch of 100 graduates will be accomplishing studies in 2018, which the university leadership strongly believes would be well equipped to bring a noticeable change in the society.