The Higher Education Commission (HEC) on Thursday announced overseas PhD scholarships for faculty members of selected public universities across Pakistan. Titled ‘Overseas Scholarships for Public Sector Universities’, the awards will fall under the commission’s Faculty Development Programme and will entertain applications from public universities that have a human resource development (HRD) component in their Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP).

According to HEC, applicants must be associated with the following universities to be eligible for the scholarships. They universities are: Azad Jammu and Kashmir Women University, Balochistan University of Engineering and Technology, Ghazi University, FATA University, Khushhaal Khan Khattak University, Lahore College for Women University, National University of Modern Languages (NUML), Sardar Bahadur Khan Women University, Shaheed Benazir Bhutto University, Shaheed Benazir Bhutto Medical University, University of Baltistan, University of Engineering and Technology Lahore, University of Engineering and Technology Peshawar (Jalozai campus), University of Malakand, University of Swabi, University of Swat main campus and women sub campus at Mingora as well as Women University Multan.

The commission said scholarships would be awarded in specific disciplines for each participating university and all eligible candidates would have to appear in HEC Aptitude Test (HAT) and obtain at least 50 percent marks. HATs will be conducted in four distinct disciplines that include engineering and IT, management science and business education, social sciences – arts and humanities, and agriculture and veterinary sciences, biological sciences and physical sciences.

The scholarship award is open to nationals of Pakistan and AJK provided they have 18 years of education in the field they wish to pursue a PhD in, and a maximum two second divisions in their academic career. The age restriction limit is 40 years for regular employees of the aforementioned universities, while it has been limited at 35 years for others.

It is also to be noted that eligible candidates that are not faculty members of the selected universities will be offered faculty positions as lecturers in one of the universities through selection boards. Successful candidates will also have to submit a bond with HEC and respective university guaranteeing to serve the university for five years after completion of studies.

Candidates will have to secure admissions in the international universities with whom HEC has signed agreement or HEC may allocate any country or international university to the candidate for the purpose of PhD studies. The applicants have been asked to submit applications online by December 20 at  eportal.hec.gov.pk/ofdp .

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