Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif launched a number of special initiatives for youth, aiming at empowering the country’s young population. The five programs include 75 MS and PhD Scholarships for 25 top-ranked international universities, 20,000 Internships for Young Engineers, 20 Under-Developed Districts Transformation Programs, 250 Mini Sports Complexes Initiatives and Pakistan Innovation Fund.

Speaking at the occasion, the Prime Minister highlighted the crucial role of young people in the society and assured that his government will continue to strengthen the initiatives for youth and will broaden its scope to benefit young generation across the country. “Increase in number of young population is a great opportunity for our nation, we only need to provide them with right skills and enabling environment.”

Addressing the youth, the Prime Minister said that education is the biggest weapon that you need to excel in life. “I would like our young generation to promote tolerance in society and stand out in their chosen fields. I assure you resources will follow when you have a clear vision, commitment for your cause and passion for hard work.” He said that though situation caused by floods has caused great economic disturbance but still the Government will continue to put in more and more resources aimed at empowering our young minds.

Earlier, in his welcome address, Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives Mr Ahsan Iqbal said that no stone will be left unturned to make sure that Pakistani youth gets best possible chances to shine in their chosen fields and serves this country to the best of their abilities. He appreciated the Prime Minister for his landmark projects for youth during his stints as CM Punjab. He briefly shared the vision behind all the five programs launched on the occasion and assured that despite limited resources development of country’s youth will remain among the top-most priorities of the government.

It is pertinent to mention that one of the above-mentioned programs “75 MS and PhD Scholarships for 25 top-ranked international universities” will be executed by the Higher Education Commission (HEC) of Pakistan and will include 40 PhD and 35 MS scholarships to Pakistani and Azad Kashmir nationals. The scholarship awardees will study in the world’s 25 universities ranked world’s top by the QS and Times Higher Education (THE) World Rankings.

Students aspiring to avail themselves of the scholarships to be awarded on a first-come-first-served basis can submit an online application through portal by March 21, 2023. All Pakistani/Azad Kashmir nationals are eligible to apply, however, they shall provide a proof of confirmed/unconditional admission or enrolment in any of the world’s 25 top-ranked universities.

For MS scholarships, applicants must have a minimum qualification of BS/BE/Master’s or equivalent to 16 years of education in relevant fields of study, while for the PhD scholarships, candidates must have MS/MPhil/ME or equivalent to 18 years of education in relevant fields of study. Besides, applicants must have a minimum CGPA of 3.0 out of 4.0 and 3.75 out of 5.0 in the semester system or 1st Division in the annual system in terminal degree.

Related: 396 Sri Lankan Students Win Scholarships to Study in Pakistan

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Arshad Yousafzai is a Karachi-based journalist covering Education and Human Rights. He can be reached on Twitter @Arshadyousafzay

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