One-day Workshop on Student Advancement Fund Endowment – october 4, 2018
The Promotion of Education in Pakistan (PEP) Foundation has established Student Advancement Fund Endowment (SAFE) across 40 universities in Pakistan with the support of Higher Education Commission (HEC), Pakistan. To reaffirm the vision and commitment towards the endowment fund, Promotion of Education in Pakistan (PEP) Foundation organized the one day workshop in collaboration with Higher Education Commission, Pakistan on Oct 4, 2018. This workshop was held at Lecture Hall, Higher Education Commission Office; Islamabad.
During the workshop, the importance of philanthropy for the higher education institution was discussed in detail. Philanthropy builds networks of friends and supporters who contribute to the long term well-being of the university in many ways beyond their financial contribution, e.g. acting as ambassadors, providing links with industry and mentoring current students. Fundraising for the universities is an opportunity not only to raise financial resources but also to communicate both the purpose and importance of an institution.
The workshop was designed in a way that it would help the Vice Chancellors and other management team leaders to create a model to increase and support the fundraising in the universities. Each participant university also developed its own action plan for the Annual University Fundraising Week.
Different Challenges in fundraising were also brought on the table for the discussion. There is an utmost need to establish a development office in each university for the fundraising drive. The development office must devise an integrated fundraising strategy based on a clear understanding of their own distinctiveness, goals and particular opportunities. Number for Capacity Building opportunities should be provided to the development office so they can strengthen their governing bodies’ competence and understanding of institutional advancement.
It was concluded that it is the necessity for the universities to develop the integrated advancement plans that includes; fundraising, alumni relations and communications activities – based on a clear understanding of their own distinctiveness, goals and particular opportunities.
One-day Workshop for Student Start up Business Centers – October 5, 2018
Student Start Up Business Centre (SSBC) is a joint program of Promotion of Education In Pakistan Foundation Inc., USA , Higher Education Commission (HEC) Pakistan and nine public sector universities of Pakistan. This initiative started in 2016. The SSBC program was created for universities in Pakistan to encourage, promote and help develop student start-up businesses/companies. SSBC provides basic office facilities/incubation space and/or technical help, financial assistance and training to facilitate the success of a startup.
Higher Education Commission, Pakistan and Promotion of Education in Pakistan (PEP) Foundation held an exclusive workshop on operating a Start-Up Business Center on Friday, October 5, 2018 at Higher Education Comission in Islamabad. This workshop was open to Vice Chancellors and Directors of the University Student Start-Up Business Centers (SSBCs) only. The Objectives of the workshop were to determine the role and performance of SSBCs in universities. Also, it was aimed to discuss the various challenges being faced by SSBCs
Student Advancement Fund Endowment (SAFE)
Promotion of Education in Pakistan (PEP) Foundation with the support of Higher Education Commission, Pakistan will provide the capacity building program in the following areas
Building the student Alumni Network
Branding and Marketing - Out reach the possibilities
Plan of the Activities – Student Fundraising Activities
Review the Action Plans
Promotion of Education in Pakistan (PEP) Foundation will follow up with all the participant universities to formally develop and execute the work plan for the Annual Fundraising Week. The Annual Fundraising week is scheduled in the first quarter of year 2019. It was decided unanimously during the workshop.
Student Start up Business Centers (SSBC)s
Promotion of Education in Pakistan Foundation will conduct Orientation Sessions on Social Innovation and Entrepreneurship for students of the nine partner universities. These sessions are aimed to inform university students on:
What is Social innovation?
Why is Social Innovation important?
How can students go on to become social innovators?
Schedule of Orientation Sessions
Nov 1 University of Science and Technology, Bannu
Nov 5 Pakistan Institute of Fashion and Design, Lahore
Nov 6 Virtual University, Lahore
Nov 7 University of Agriculture, Faisalabad
Nov 8 Government College University for Women, Faisalabad
Nov 19 Mehran University of Engineering and Technology, Jamshoro
Nov 20 Shah Abdul Latif Bhatai University, Khairpur
Dec 6 COMSATS University, Islamabad
The Student Start up Business Center at University of Science and Technology (UST), Bannu announced the 2nd open call for the business plan competition, 2018. In this regard Shaikh Obaidullah- Deputy Director SSBC, conducted awareness sessions in all the Departments of UST Bannu.
From the first cohort of the SSBC, Mr. Shah Muhammed submitted his first payback installment to SSBC university fund.This is quite an encouraging step towards the success and prosperity of the SSBC of University of Sciences and Technology, Bannu.
In the coming quarter, UST Bannu is going to organize a Seminar on the role of SMEs and its importance. with the support of its partner Small Medium Enterprise Authority (SMEDA) . Also, the SSBC team has planned exposure visits of students to incubation centers in NUST, Islamabad and Peshawar University.
Virtual University, Pakistan conducted an open session for the students on "How to make a Business Plan" on Tuesday, July 24, 2018. Another open Session was also organized for the students on "How to make the financial part of the business plan” on Thursday, July 25, 2018.
The SSBC Staff attended the International Entrepreneurship Bootcamp conducted by Fatima Jinnah Women University at Resource Center Muree from August 27 to September 2, 2018.
FUNDRAISING IN HIGHER EDUCATION
Pakistan needs to invest heavily and commit its funds to make high quality education accessible to all of its young people and thereby enable the nation to be a competitive player in the global economy. Pakistan needs to increase its current participation rate of five percent of the 17 – 24 year age group enrollment in a college or university to at least 50 per cent to achieve the level of developed countries. The government allocated budgets alone are unlikely to be sufficient in the foreseeable future to achieve the required growth at public universities which cater to a large majority of students. It is therefore time that the universities take a leading role and establish and expand as rapidly as possible endowment funds that can be utilized to meet the goal. Colleges and universities must become familiar with and practice the art and science of fundraising to ensure a sustainable future for the increasing number of young people seeking education.
Education expenses: Financial aid
The only way forward for the country to alleviate poverty and secure its path to development is through educating its masses. Currently, students rely on their families as the main financial resource for supporting their education expenses.
In a recent survey of 421 randomly-selected students that PEP Foundation undertook, 90 per cent of students were found to depend on their families for providing financial resources for their residence, education and other living expenses. Only 14 per cent of surveyed students were beneficiaries of some type of grants or financial aid services, and only four per cent relied on their savings or loans to pay for their education. With such a limited pool of available resources and the increasing number of young people that need education; financing higher education requires immediate action.
Expanding financial aid to students
To ensure that the projected workforce of approximately 221 million people by 2050 gets adequate training, financial aid and scholarships must become available to students seeking more education and training. When educating the masses, a massive financial commitment must take place accordingly. According to PEP Foundation’s survey, only 26 per cent of students that were asked thought that the existing financial services at their universities were very helpful. The majority of students expect more funds and opportunities to finance their education through these services. While the current financial aid is very limited in many public and private universities, their efforts to expand the resources are also mostly confined to grants from the government and Higher Education Commission (HEC).
Such a limited pool of available financial aid is not nearly close to supporting the education of needy students. Institutions of higher education must become creative and explore as many ways of tapping financial resources as possible. Expanding their services and student pool is not just a matter of increasing access, but also of institutional survival. The more financial resources an institution has to offer to its students, the more funds it attracts—which in return strengthens the institution’s foundation and overall operations.
The most pressing matter for all stakeholders of education is expanding the existing pool of financial resources and identifying mechanisms that can ensure sustainable growth of institution funds. Ways to increase funding include tapping into the alumni resources of educational institutions, establishing endowment funds both for institutions and to support financial aid for needy students, community involvement and contributions to education through fundraising public campaigns.
For these methods to be effective, it is very important to plan in advance and take action aggressively and consistently. The large influx of students, especially those coming from financially disadvantaged backgrounds will increase tremendously the need for student financial support, creating an additional burden to the currently exhausted funding resources. One pathway that is still new to many educational institutions in Pakistan is establishing endowment funds.
These types of perpetual funds provide institutions with financial security, freedom and the opportunity to better invest and expand their resources, both human and capital. Donors include alumni of the institutions, local investors and businessmen, philanthropists, people interested in specific programs offered at the college or university level or just funds raised periodically for the purpose of supporting higher education.
Thus, endowments can be made toward a specifically designated goal, for example, supporting a certain number of students to attend a specific degree, or to develop a particular department, like the arts or sports programs in that school.
However, it is crucial that the established endowment funds have in place legal rules that allow their administrators to use them specifically for financial aid and programs that directly benefit the students. These funds may not be used for such expenses as salaries or increase in salaries, fringe benefits or pension benefits of faculty or staff or for their residences.
The student financial aid programs must become an essential fiscal responsibility of each university and be developed from funds raised by each institution. Pakistani universities should look for sustainable financial resources beyond the government. According to PEP Foundation’s survey, the majority of students who were asked were willing to donate back once they graduated, if they received any type of financial aid from their institution toward their education expenses. The colleges and universities must plan in advance to invest in such financial aid schemes that can become very significant during the lifetime of their alumni. A small contribution today is very appealing and can pay back several times more once the student gains full time employment and is contacted to give back to other needy students.