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Professor Dr Nizamuddin - a man of vision

By Altaf Hussain Asad

Established in 2004, the University of Gujrat is situated at a scenic spot away from the main city. Free from all kinds of pollution and spread over nearly 1,000 kanals, the university campus is a sight to behold.

The modern architecture with all kinds of facilities, including artistically-designed purpose-built classrooms, a digital library, conference halls, multi-storied buildings for the faculties of arts and sciences, is very appealing.

The university caters to the needs of peripheral areas like Gujranwala, Sialkot and Narowal. Presently, there are nearly 10,000 students studying here of which nearly 70 per cent are female. The university’s 25 departments boast of the services of 260 teachers of which some 65 per cent comprise the fair sex.

Bringing with him excellent academic expertise, the university’s present vice chancellor Prof Dr Muhammad Nizamuddin took over the charge in 2006 and quickly upgraded the place as per the requirements of any high-quality institution. Dr Nizamuddin did his Masters in Sociology from the University of Chicago and followed it with a PhD from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. He served the United Nations for 20 years and held senior positions in Jordan, Egypt and Ethopia. Later he also served as Director for the Asia and Pacific Region of UNFPA at the UN headquarters in New York but left his highly-beneficial job at the United Nations to return to his country to serve his people.

“Not only do we want to provide knowledge to our students but practical skills too. Theoretical knowledge alone thus is not enough. IT training is a must for every student in our university even if he is a student of Islamic Studies,” Dr Nizamuddin states.

The university under his aegis has crossed many milestones. Be it Sufism or the 1857 War of Independence, the university has organised conferences on many burning topics in order to conduct dialogues with leading luminaries of the country.

A medical college has also just started functioning here for which the university has a hired a highly-skilled faculty, too.

Dr Nizamuddin throws light on his newly-constructed medical college: “It’s not an easy job to start a medical college but the government has been very supportive and the chief minister too has taken a keen interest in the project. I intend setting up a medical college where medical research will be given special emphasis. There is hardly any medical research done in our medical colleges these days. We don’t maintain any record as regards any disease in our hospitals, too. I want to introduce a ‘Health System

Management’ degree programme to fill this void.

“We also want to train para medical staff. Nurses are known to run entire hospitals out there in the West but the burden falls on doctors in our country. Similarly, many technical jobs are done by doctors for which they don’t carry much expertise. We will train technical staff too,” says Dr Nizamuddin.

Two hospitals — the Aziz Bhatti Shaheed Hospital and Social Security Hospital Gujrat — will be coming under the university medical college. There are nearly 60 other colleges too that come under the University of Gujrat. Dr Nizamuddin elaborates: “Just like the universities should be under the HEC, I feel that the constituent colleges under any university must be under the control of its vice chancellor.

“The state of affairs at these colleges is not up to the mark. They may be awarding their students our university degrees but they are under the direct control of the provincial government. This dichotomy should end. If the colleges came under our control, we will make sure they give maximum output,” he makes his point.

Dr Nizamuddin is also of the view that we can not attain excellence by neglecting social sciences. Progress, in his opinion, does not mean progress in science only. Rather he is for equal emphasis on social sciences too. Recently, he conducted a survey which dealt with the problems faced by our old people in villages. His students collected nearly 4,000 samples for this survey. It shows how much attention he pays to society and its changing trends.

The number of PhD-holder teachers at present is not very high. Dr Nizamuddin plans to expand the number of PhD-holder academics in his university. He proudly says that the university’s School of Art and

Design is turning out to be a high-quality centre.

“Our School of Art And Design is headed by Fawad Khwaja, a man of high calibre. We are working with our local industry. We are designing products for them. So our art section is related to the local industry. It has latest modern labs and other technical facilities.”

Dr Nizamuddin has plenty of ambitious plans for his university which also include the establishment of a centre of history, culture and Pakistan Studies along with a department of social policy and welfare. He is a man of vision and it can be stated without any doubt that the university under him will cross many milestones.

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posted by S A J Shirazi @ 12:24 PM,

1 Comments:

At 9:31:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can somebody find some criticism on dr Nizam. Perfect personality :-)

 

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