Pakistani students proceeding to foreign countries for studies are ‘ambassadors of Pakistan’ and it is their responsibility to portray a positive image of the country,  Higher Education Commission (HEC) Chairman Dr Tariq Banuri said on Friday.  He was addressing 200 Pakistani students selected for Stipendium Hungaricum Scholarship at the commission secretariat . The ceremony was part of Bilateral Higher Education and Scientific Exchange Programme.

Informing students of the details of the culture exchange, Dr  Banuri said, “Hungary is not only a place characterized by rich culture, history and creativity but it is also a place of science, technology and innovation.” He urged students to make maximum use of the tremendous opportunity and experience it to the fullest. He also encouraged students to bring knowledge and expertise back to Pakistan and to forge academic and cultural linkages.

The HEC chairman explained how cultural exchange could enlighten them in the future. “Hungary is a place of culture, history, creativity, science and technology of the future which brings together the past and the future. Learn from it.”

 Dr Banuri assured his full support to Hungarian students, professors and researchers to come to Pakistan as well so more students and teachers could continue to learn from each other by working in areas of mutual interest. Hungarian faculty also acknowledged his statement and showed interest on taking things further with Pakistan.

 Sandor Mihalko, counselor for the embassy of Hungary and Tivadar Takács, deputy head of mission, Embassy of Hungary presided as the honorary guests on the occasion, while HEC Executive Director Dr Arshad Ali and  HEC HED Adviser Waseem S Hashmi Syed were also present.

While explaining the scholarship program to students and faculty members, Sandor Mihalko said the aim of this programme was to contribute to the development of Pakistan. He urged the students to develop professional contacts during their stay in Hungary as person to person contacts would help build bilateral relations. He mentioned that the Hungarian government was investing $3 million a year for this programme, while more budget was allocated every year. He also informed that out of 200 scholarships, 125 scholarships had been awarded for BS studies, 50 for MS studies and 25 for PhD programmes.

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