Islamabad:05 June 2012: Professor Dr. Nazir Ahmed Sangi was appointed as vice chancellor of the Allama Iqbal Open University (AIOU) two years back. While running the affairs of the university, he also took a number of new initiatives to uplift it to the level of a high-ranking educational institution both in term of enrolment and quality education. During his two-year tenure, he has been able to increase the university's enrolment to about 70,000 additional students, which is more than the enrolment of 10 universities.
Hailing from Larkana district, he paid special attention to the promotion of education in the country's remote regions. The AIOU is now in the process of setting up ten model study centres at various places. The university also joined the Unesco and Commonwealth in their ongoing efforts to promote girls' education.
In an exclusive interview in connection with 'The News Education Expo 2012,' Professor Dr. Nazir Ahmed Sangi said that the AIOU, since its established in 1974, has made consistent efforts to upgrade its academic standard and ranking. However, in the last two years, the focus has been laid on a strategy to help the government in ensuring access of quality education to all parts of the country, particularly less-developed and neglected regions in Sindh, southern Punjab and Balochistan. In case of Sindh, the AIOU is now in the process of setting up ten model study centres at various places, including Methi and Khadaabad (Tharparkar). The first such study centre has already started functioning at Umerkot, with state-of-the-art educational facilities. The AIOU is also engaged in providing vocational training and job-oriented education to young people under the Benazir Bhutto (Shaheed) Youth Development Programme. The university has joined the Unesco and Commonwealth in their ongoing efforts to promote girls' education in Sindh.
Dr. Sangi said: "On my elevation to the post of vice chancellor two years back, I took it as challenge to develop the AIOU as a high-ranking university of the country, by exploiting all available resources and making the best use of modern digital technology. While running its routine administrative affairs in an efficient manner, a number of new initiatives have been taken up to further enhance its public and professional image."
The vice chancellor said that over 1.3 million students are getting benefit from the educational services of AIOU in all provinces, districts, tehsils, towns and villages. At present, one can find AIOU students and graduates working in almost every organisation of the country. During the last two years, an average of 30,000-60,000 students have been added to the network, especially in the far-flung areas. Women's participation has reached almost 58% that further indicate the importance of the university in the country's overall development.
In addition to this, associate degrees in Accounting and Finance, Banking and Finance, Hospital Management, Human Resource Management, IT Management and Marketing Management would be launched from August 1, 2012. In the second phase, more than 26 degrees would be added within a period of two to three years.
The vice chancellor said that for postgraduate degrees, the university has been following rules of the HEC like interviewing only those who have cleared the NTS test. "Our students who do postgraduation are better for the simple reason that they are already working, they have the practical knowledge of what they are learning."
The new steps that were taken recently by the AIOU to promote quality education is to increase networking in the organisation and help the government in achieving UN's Millennium Goals, ensuring education for all by the year 2015.
The AIOU has enrolled about 70,000 additional students which is more than the enrolment of ten universities. E-learning was given special importance. The Centre for Instructional Designs was established to help students with electronic version of the written material already being provided to them.
Talking about 'The News Education Expo 2012,' the vice chancellor said that students would get first-hand knowledge from it and it would be a great help to educational institutions to get their messages across.
Professor Dr. Nazir Ahmed Sangi has to his credit over 26 years of professional, teaching and management experience in public and private sector organisations. He obtained two gold medals in his education pursuits from Mehran University of Engineering and Technology, Jamshoro, besides a merit scholarship for higher studies abroad that followed his PhD degree in Industrial (Engineering) Studies from the Liverpool University, England. He has also won the prestigious National NCR IT Education Excellence Award 2010 for development of e-learning software and NCR IT Education Excellence Award 2004 for his high-profile contribution to the IT Education. The World Education Congress (WEC) has recently given a special award to him for his dedication service in the education sector. He has done post-doctoral research in Educational Technology at the RCET, Kent State University, Ohio, USA, in 2008. The news.