KARACHI: As much as twelve candidates from across Sindh collected their certificates and

prizes during the pre-departure orientation of the Chevening programme held at British Deputy

High Commission office.

The scholars, who have been selected for the programme that is fully funded by the United

Kingdom (UK) government, will be leaving to pursue degrees in masters programmes in their

respective fields.

Shanzae Asif, who is the only female selected for the programme from Sindh, will be studying

international conflict studies at Kings College London. Miss Asif had completed her Bachelors

in political science from Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS). “I applied for

London School of Economics, Kings College London and SOAS, University of London and got

admission in two of them,” she said. Asif plans to teach in LUMS for two years, as per the

scholarships requirement, after completing her one-year masters degree.

Umair Ibrahim, who had completed his bachelors from NED University of Engineering and

Technology, is also one of the candidates who will be doing his masters in housing and urbanism

from The Architectural Association. “I am an architect and have keen interest in studying it

deeply,” he said. Ibrahim, who was also teaching at NED University, plans to continue teaching

at the university after completing his degree abroad.

While motivating the candidates to serve Pakistan, Chevening Alumni Association of Pakistans

Sindh head Zafar Siddiqui said to go overseas and study under such programmes is wonderful

and the experience is irreplaceable. Siddiqui, who went for his masters in business

administration through Chevening programme in 1999, said that the increase in number of

students applying for this scholarship is commendable. “The number of scholars from all over

Pakistan in 1999 was around 40 and it went down to 20 few years ago, but the recent increase

should be appreciated,” he said.

Congratulating the selected Chevening Scholars from the region, acting deputy high

commissioner in Karachi, Steve Crossman, said, “Pakistan is one of the UKs top priority

countries for Chevening awards.” He added that there are 1,400 alumni of the scholarship in

Pakistan. The number of Chevening scholars being sent from Pakistan to the UK has increased

from 73 candidates in 2015 to 80 scholars this year, Crossman said at the pre-departure


The competition this year was exceptionally high and over 2,300 students applied for the

programme. “The Chevening programme not only brings immediate benefits for individual

scholars, in terms of future career prospects and development, but it also delivers long-term

benefits for both Pakistan and the UK.”

The application process for the programme starts every year in August and ends in first week of

November, after which the applications are processed and shortlisted by the UK office. This

year, around 230 applications were shortlisted and sent to Pakistan by the end of December

2015. Those applications were scrutinised and further shortlisted for interviews in February

2016, which were conducted till April 2016.

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