KABUL – 18 July 2022 – Asian University for Women (AUW), based in Chittagong, Bangladesh, offered hundreds of new scholarships for Afghan women who are eligible and qualified for admission to AUW’s undergraduate or graduate programs. During a four-day visit to Kabul, Kamal Ahmad, Founder of the Asian University for Women, met with Mr. Sher Mohammad Abbas Stanikzai, Acting Deputy Foreign Minister of Afghanistan and former head of the Taliban’s political office in Doha, Qatar, and made the offer. He also handed over a gift of essential medicines for Kabul hospitals that was requested by the Afghan authorities. Deputy Foreign Minister Stanikzai welcomed the AUW initiative and committed his support for the proposal.
Separately, Kamal Ahmad also held discussions with the Acting Minister of Higher Education; the Minister of Education; the Chancellor of Kabul University; and other senior government officials. He also called on the Ambassador of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) based in Kabul.
In addition to the scholarships, AUW has proposed to initiate a pilot online secondary school education program through which Afghan students studying at the AUW Graduate School of Education would run online classes following the Afghan national curriculum. A new MOU is being prepared in this regard to be entered into between AUW and the Afghan Ministry of Education. This pilot project would provide an opportunity for AUW Afghan Masters students to gain teaching experience while also enabling young girls to continue their education at home while the Afghan government determines its approach to girls’ and women’s education. The Afghan Acting Minister of Education invited AUW to make a formal proposal in this regard and noted that his Ministry will be soon initiating a Directorate of Online Education.
It may be noted that AUW has been deeply engaged in education of Afghan girls and women from its inception. Currently, about 170 Afghan women attend AUW on full scholarship.
About Asian University for Women (AUW):
Founded in 2008 and located in Chittagong, Bangladesh, AUW is the first of its kind: a regional institution dedicated to women’s education and leadership development through liberal arts and sciences education. It is international in outlook but rooted in the contexts and aspirations of the people of Asia. Chartered by the Parliament of Bangladesh, AUW exists solely to support a rising network of women leaders, entrepreneurs, and changemakers from across the region. It seeks out women who show significant academic achievement and potential, demonstrate courage and a sense of outrage at injustice, and are empathic to the woes of other people.
1160 students from 17 countries currently attend AUW: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Syria, Timor Leste, Vietnam, and Yemen. More than 85% of AUW students are on full or near-full scholarships funded by supporters from around the world. The University has graduated over a thousand students to date. A majority of AUW graduates secure employment in the private and public sectors in their home countries while about 25% go on to pursue graduate studies at other institutions of higher learning including Oxford, Cambridge, Johns Hopkins, Stanford, Columbia, Duke, Brandeis and Tufts, among others.