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Thursday, October 5, 2023

Collaborative Progress and Strategic Planning: USAID's HESSA Initiative Review Meeting at AWKUM Hosted by Vice-Chancellor Prof. Dr. Zahoor ul Haq


Professor Dr. Zahoor ul Haq, the Vice-Chancellor of Abdul Wali Khan University Mardan, recently hosted a gathering of partner universities involved in USAID's Higher Education System Strengthening Activity (HESSA) in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. The meeting, attended by distinguished figures including Professor Dr. Hassan Sher, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Swat, and Professor Dr. Nasir Jamal Khattak, Vice-Chancellor of Swabi Women University and Pro Vice-Chancellor of the University of Peshawar, focused on evaluating the progress of the HESSA initiative.

During the meeting, Dr. Aslam Chaudhry, Chief of Party-HESSA, led a delegation from USAID, engaging in discussions with Vice-Chancellors and faculty members from universities that had participated in various HESSA training programs. The deliberations centered on the accomplishments of the program over the past two years, including international study tours to the University of Utah, USA, benefiting Pakistani faculty members from 16 partner universities. More than 400 university officials have received valuable capacity-building support through the USAID-HESSA program, contributing to the enhancement of the higher education ecosystem and the production of skilled graduates.

Looking ahead, the participants were briefed on the strategic and business planning process for universities. Each HESSA partner university will establish a dedicated planning team, which will receive training from international experts on developing and implementing strategic plans. The meeting also involved discussions about the proposed plan for the third year of project implementation, encompassing feedback on improvements to the HESSA training programs' structure. The suggestions and recommendations gathered will be integrated into the program framework, with input from the academic leadership of all HESSA partner universities.