RAWALPINDI: Dr Nafisa Shah, chairperson of National Commission for Human Development (NCHD), on Sunday called for increasing women`s participation in all walks of life, especially in higher education institutions.
Addressing the closing ceremony of the workshop on “Women in Leadership and Management in Higher Education”, she said it is high time for Pakistan to promote women in leadership roles.
The workshop was held at the National University of Science & Technology (Nust) in collaboration with the Fatima Jinnah Women University (FJWU) and the Association of Commonwealth Universities (ACU). She said colleges and universities need teachers to bring out leadership qualities in women.
The workshop`s aim was to develop a network of highly trained and confident professional women equipped to collaborate extensively across the country and draw on each other`s strengths to introduce initiatives to help embed gender equitable practices in their universities.
The workshop discussed women in academic leadership and their role in research and generating resources. The participants also discussed how teams are made and how networks are formed, highlighting the role of networking.
Prof Dr Saeeda Asadullah Khan, vice chancellor FJWU, said in the globalised world of the 21st century, women of developing countries were in danger of becoming more and more marginalised unless they acquire new skills and knowledge. She said the universities all over the world were facing management challenges, but at the same fascinating new opportunities were cropping up for women.
“The continuing under representation of women at senior levels of higher education sector is receiving renewed attention,” she said, adding that the world was realising the importance of women as managers and leaders.
Dorothy Garland, director professional networks ACU, was impressed by the “ideas and initiatives” discussed at the workshop. “What you will be achieving individually and together will not only begin to transform the norms and expectations relating to the leadership and management of higher education in Pakistan but will also be contributing to the much broader, Commonwealth-wide endeavors to ensure that our universities and, in turn, our communities are enriched by the more equal participation of women and men at all levels of the higher education hierarchy,” she said.
Engineer Mohammad Asghar, Rector Nust, said only those with knowledge and awareness would excel in the 21st century. “We have to show the younger generation the Sirat-e-Mustaqeem and in meeting this challenge, dedicated commitment is required from educationists and academicians.” He said knowledge, skills and motivation were the core requirements for success.