Islamabad - The Higher Education Commission (HEC) yesterday organised interactive discussion on Higher Education Vision 2025 to seek suggestions and ponder upon the targets of higher education sector for the next 10 years.

Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Reforms Ahsan Iqbal was the chief guest on the occasion, while Chairman HEC Dr Mukhtar Ahmed and Executive Director HEC Dr Arshad Ali were also present.

Speaking on the occasion, Ahsan Iqbal shared the targets set so far under the Higher Education Vision 2025 which will be formally announced soon. He said, “Vision envisages six indicators which the universities have to concentrate for achievement of targeted excellence.” He added the higher education institutions need to improve fundamental purposeful instruction, become place of quality research and innovation, strengthen linkages with industry, turn into agents of change, embed technology, and produce entrepreneurial leaders. He observed that every activity revolves around knowledge in the current knowledge revolution era which necessitates a paradigm shift in the learning models of Pakistan.

He said that as the Vision 2025 eyes building a knowledge economy, so the Higher Education Vision 2025 has been made a vital part of it. Stressing the need for political stability and continuity of policies, he affirmed that Pakistan needs a strong knowledge foundation to become an Asian tiger.

The minister informed that the government plans to establish academy of social sciences to promote social sciences in the country. The focus from STEM [science, technology, engineering, and mathematics] subjects has now been shifted to STEAM [science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics] subjects, he added.

He said 10,000 Pakistani scholars will be sent to the United States for study in the next 10 years under the US-Pakistan Knowledge Corridor. The China-Pakistan Economic Corridor project is an economic game changer, while the US-Pakistan Knowledge Corridor will become a knowledge game changer. 

Mukhtar Ahmed said that HEC is following the government policies and it has aligned its goals with the Government’s Vision 2025. He revealed that the number of higher education institutions has reached 180 in the country, while the ratio of enrolment in universities has increased over the years without any compromise on quality.

He underscored that HEC will set up 61 university campuses at district level. He informed that the number of PhDs has remarkable increased, however HEC aims to build 40 per cent PhD faculty in universities by 2025.