News & Stories

Campus Updates July 2024: International Connections

Quality control and accreditation are both very much on my mind this summer. In this regard, Dr. Nayer as Registrar attended the annual International Network for Quality Assurance Agency in Higher Education (INQAAHE) conference, this year held in Romania. Pakistan’s Higher Education Commission (HEC) also presented at the conference, drawing in part on Forman’s external accreditation experience involving the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE). 

Our international partnerships continue to bear fruit. In this case that included an opportunity to attend the AMICAL Annual Conference online, focused this year on Artificial Intelligence (AI) and covering such topics Designing Engaging Courses with Generative AI; The Future of Higher Education in the Age of AI; and Essential AI Tools for Academic Integrity and Success

On short notice I arranged an informal lunch in my residence for two Program Associates from the American Bar Association (ABA), visiting Pakistan as part of a Rule of Law Program. Given that the focus of their program is on issues related to human rights and gender, several members of our faculty were also invited to attend, providing our visitors with a variety of useful perspectives. 

Shermeen Bano, Lecturer in Forman’s Sociology Department, reports that she will be leaving for Canada later this summer, having been offered a fully funded PhD fellowship in the Sociology Department at the University of British Columbia. According to Shermeen, “I am genuinely grateful for the opportunities and experiences I had during my time at Forman Christian College”.

As most readers of the Rector’s Update know, our US-based support group Friends of Forman plays a vital role in supporting scholarships and contributing to special projects such as the Jim Tebbe Campus Center. From time to time, Friends also provides important links to our past, with the children and grandchildren of those connected to Forman continuing to contribute in various ways. 

This month, those contributions included a gift via Friends from the grandson of Dr. F. Mowbray Velte who was an English professor at Forman nearly a century ago. His mother Marguerite Velte Hasbrouck — born in Lahore in 1933 and the daughter of Dr. Velte — was also a long-time Forman supporter, contributing to Friends until she passed away last year at the age of 90; his Aunt Lois, another of Dr. Velte’s daughters who died only last month at the age of 95, was also a long-time supporter of Forman Christian College (A Chartered University). 

Forman’s Admissions Office organized an Open House for  prospective graduate students in the Jim Tebbe Campus Center,  showcasing offerings, facilities, financial aid, and admissions criteria  at the graduate level. Most academic departments were represented as well as various support offices such as Admissions, Careers  Services, Financial Aid, and Church Relations. More than 500 students  attended from Forman and other Lahore-area universities. 

A delegation from the Pak Mission Society that numbered more than  twenty and included representatives from various churches and NGOs visited Forman, mostly to see our campus and become more  familiar with some of the support programs offered to Christian  students including admissions, financial aid, coaching classes, and the Christian Life program. 

I was privileged to attend the closing ceremony of the Khushali  (“Prosperity”) Program, a pioneering partnership involving Forman and the Center for Law and Justice (CLJ), along with the French Embassy, British Council, and University of Lancaster, among others. The Speaker of the Punjab Assembly also attended. The 30 female graduates, all daughters of sanitation workers, wore “caps and gowns” to the ceremony, providing a graduation experience that most probably never thought that they would have.

One Khushali graduate was missing from the graduation ceremony, a young seventeen- year-old selected as one of three Pakistanis to attend an annual summer youth gathering in Moscow; she had already departed for Russia from Pakistan the day before. However, her proud family were present to collect her graduation certificate. Forman graduate Mary Gill from CLJ and her team played a key role in organizing this inspiring program. 

We were once again pleased to provide a venue for the Pakistan Bible Society’s annual Summer Sports Festival. This year, the program started on May 31 and continued through June 15, involving hundreds of young people participating in several sports including cricket, football, basketball, and athletics.