Vice Chancellor - Prof. Dr. Hassan Amir Shah, Sitara-i-Imtiaz

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Leading actress Maya Ali, addressing the inauguration of three-day breast cancer awareness campaign by the Shaukat Khanum Memorial Cancer Hospital & Research Centre (SKMCH&RC) at colleges and universities, has called for breaking social stigmas and myths attached to the women’s diseases like breast cancer.


The three-day campaign began from Government College University Lahore with an awareness seminar which also addressed by eminent oncologist Dr Kashifa Ehsan. The seminar was organised by the GCU Quality Enhancement Cell in collaboration with the SKMCH&RC.


 “Girls, it’s your life, make a promise to yourself to take care of yourself. And, the first step in this journey is that you must be aware about yourself” Maya Ali told a large gathering of young female students at the university’s Bukhari Auditorium. She told the students that in their youth they could not even talk to their parents about the feminine health issues due to lack of awareness. “But girls, you are really lucky that you are being given so much awareness about your health issues and life,” she said. Maya Ali asked the students to work as volunteers in their families to raise awareness among their female family members about the breast cancer.


Addressing the seminar, GCU Quality Enhancement Cell Director Ms Iram Sohail said “breast cancer is not just a disease that strikes at a woman; rather it strikes at the very heart of all those who are associated with us; our children, our family etc”. She said that from a cause, the cancer awareness had gradually evolved as a mission for GCU QEC since every year they organised many awareness campaigns and seminars about this potentially fatal disease. She said health and educational institutions were needed to be more focused and should come out with more awareness campaigns and seminars in a country where one in nine women were expected to be treated for invasive breast cancer.


Speaking on the occasion, Dr Kashifa Ehsan highlighted that there is frightening increase in the ratio of breast cancer in Pakistan, and recent statistics show that every ninth woman in the country is at the risk of suffering from this fatal disease. She told the GCU female students about the signs and symptoms of breast cancer and methods of self-examination which is very helpful in early detection of this disease in young girls and women. In reply to question from a student, the clinical oncologist said that all women were at risk of developing breast cancer, while the factor that put some women at greater risk was family histories of breast cancer, non-healthy food and lazy lifestyle.





Cancer awareness drive at GCU   


The Government College University Lahore Quality Enhancement Cell (GCU-QEC) celebrated the Pink Ribbon Youth Awareness Day in collaboration with the Pink Ribbon International to raise awareness among the university’s female students and staff members about the breast cancer.


“Pakistan has the highest rate of this cancer in the whole of Asia, but unfortunately there is no much awareness in our society about the disease,” said GCU QEC Director Ms Iram Sohail while addressing the on-campus awareness campaign which was followed by a walk and poster exhibition. The campaign was inaugurated by Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Hassan Amir Shah, while Prof Emeritus Dr Ikram-ul-Haq and Registrar Mr Saboor Khan were also present.


Talking to media, Iram Sohail said one of the main objectives of today’s on-campus awareness drive was to eliminate social stigmas attached to the Breast Cancer. She said that October was marked as Breast Cancer Awareness Month (BCAM) all over the world and GCU QEC had been organising a mass awareness campaign for the last few years for its female faculty members and students to make them aware about precautions, self-examination methods, and treatments for the breast cancer.


A poster exhibition on breast cancer was also part of the awareness drive. About 20 posters were put on display at the university’s Minhas Art Gallery to sensitise the people to support Pink Ribbon drive for saving thousands of women dying from the Breast Cancer every year in Pakistan.   


The posters, made by the GCU Fine Arts Department students, were inscribed with motivational and awareness messages for the Breast Cancer patients and their families who go through immense grieve and devastation.  





GCU with collaboration Punjab HEC organize a seminar for paying tribute to Eqbal Ahmad


Speakers at a seminar at the Government College University Lahore have called for materialising the dream of the late Eqbal Ahmed, a world prolific writer, journalist and political scientist, of establishing Khaldunia University as the state-of-the-art centre of liberal arts in Pakistan where freedom of speech, tolerance and open transmission of ideas would be encouraged.


The seminar entitled “Eqbal Ahmed: A citizen of the world” was organised by the GCU Quality Enhancement Cell under the auspices of Punjab Higher Education Commission (PHEC) to pay tribute to the anti-war activist who has been a rare combination of academic excellence and intellectual Skepticism , and globally admired and consulted by activists as well as policymakers and academics. The speakers said that Ahmad's life experiences shaped his political views. He grew up amidst the turmoil of postcolonial India, worked alongside the Algerian National Liberation Front in their fight against the French occupation, and later became a prominent spokesperson for peace between Israel and Palestine.


In his opening remarks, PHEC Chaimran Prof Dr Nizam-ud-Din said that Khaldunia remained Eqbal Ahmad’s living dream and the focus of his considerable energies till the end of his life. He said that the commission would take up this project with the government. He also shed light on the different perspectives of his life including the striking moral character he maintained throughout his life.  


Prof Dr Pervez Hoodbhoy, an eminent nuclear physicist and writer, reminded Muhammad Nawaz Sharif that he in his first tenure as Prime Minister had pledged to Eqbal a piece a land to build Khaldunia University, named after the 14th century Muslim historian and sociologist, Ibn Khaldun, and patterned on Hampshire College. However, he said, that later Benazir Bhutto did not carry forward the project apparently because Eqbal had criticised polices of Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto during his regime.


In his key note address, Richard Anderson Falk, an eminent American professor emeritus of international law at Princeton University, USA said that there was a need for universities which produce global citizens having empathy, respect and love for every nation of the world irrespective of their faith, cast, colour and creed. He also discussed in detail the life struggle of Ahmed, his political and academic views and interesting incidents from their longstanding friendship.  


Richard Anderson Falk, an eminent American Professor  addresses a seminar to to pay tribute to Eqbal Ahmed Prof. Dr. Nizam Chairman PHEC presents souvenir to Richard Anderson Falk an eminent American Professor.


The speakers said that Ahmed was a fierce opponent of imperialism and advocated democratic transformations in postcolonial and third-world societies. Whether writing on the rise of militant Islam, the conflict in Kashmir, U.S. involvement in Vietnam, or the cynical logic of Cold War geopolitics, Ahmad offered incisive and passionate analyses of the major political events and movements of the second half of the twentieth century. 


Talking about the writings of Eqbal Ahmed, GCU QEC Iram Sohail quoted American philosopher, Noam Choomsky, “it is a fascinating experience to view major events of the past half century through Eqbal Ahmed’s discerning eye.” GCU Dean Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences Prof Dr Tahir Kamran and Dr Kamran Asdar Ali from University of Texax, Austin also addressed the seminar which was attended by a large number of faculty members and postgraduate students from different universities.







Speakers at the concluding ceremony of five-day faculty training at the Government College University Lahore (GCU) said In - service teacher training should be mandatory for all those who take up teaching as a profession. “Teaching is not an ordinary job as it is generally considered. It is the most sensitive and specialized field today, said Punjab Higher Education Commission (PHEC) Chairman Prof. Dr. Mohammad Nizamuddin, lamenting that there is serious deficiency in our educational system that the there is no compulsory training for teachers at any level.

The five-day training was organized by the university’s Quality Enhancement Cell (GCU QEC) by funding from PHEC to build the capacity of young teachers in andragogy and communication skills.


Talking to the participants, Prof. Nizam revealed that PHEC was going to establish three teachers’ academies in Punjab on the pattern of civil services academy where extensive training would be provided to the university and college teachers. He said that these academies would also have residential facilities, so that teachers from different areas and cities could also interact during trainings and learn from sharing good practices.


Prof Dr. Nizam Chairman PHEC gives away certificate to the participant.

The participants pose for a group photo with Chairman PHEC

and the Vice Chancellor GCU


Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Hassan Amir Shah said Andragogy (Adult Learning) had become highly advanced, so teachers were needed to be trained to move from conventional to contemporary instructional strategies. He hoped that the participants would endeavour to apply what they had gained from the training. “For a better society, we need to have good teachers, so the training and capacity building of teachers is supposed to be the top priority,” Prof Shah said. The Vice Chancellor lauded the initiatives of PHEC especially its plans for capacity building of the university teachers and funding for research in Social Sciences. He advised the teachers that, before applying for funding to attend any conference, they must check the credibility and ranking of institution or university organizing it.


Giving details of training, GCU QEC Director Ms. Iram Sohail said that the topics they touched, included teaching perspectives in higher education, andragogy as an alternative vision to traditional concept of pedagogy, curriculum development and assessment techniques, communication skills, strategies for effective oral and presentation skills, academic writing, micro teaching etc. She said that the success of an institution is highly dependent on process and product and students’ achievement is one of the most rewarding aspects of teaching profession.





UN Wall unveiled at GCU


The Government College University Lahore Tuesday set up “United Nations Wall” on the campus to commemorate the 70th Anniversary of United Nations Pakistan. Vittorio Cammarota, the Director of United Nations Information Center, and Ms. Stefanie Burri, the Head of Cooperation, Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, unveiled the wall painted by a group of university’s Fine Arts students. Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Hassan Amir Shah, Deans Prof Dr Raiz Ahmed, Prof Dr Tahir Kamran and Prof Dr Iqbal Shahid, Quality Enhancement Cell (QEC) Director Iram Sohail, GCU Fine Arts Department Incharge Erfan Ullah Babar and a large number of faculty and staff members attended the inauguration of the UN Wall which aims at spreading peace, education and awareness.


Speaking on the occasion, Vice Chancellor Prof Hassan Amir Shah highly appreciated the messages on the wall, saying that no nation could progress without education and peace. The students decorated the wall with flying Doves, a universal symbol of peace, white and blue colour, the home colours of UN, and a pencil which stands for education,” he said.


Vittorio Cammarota stressed that the universities in Pakistan should hold workshops to raise awareness among students about the objectives of the United Nations. He said that UN would provide internship opportunities to students of GCU in its 21 different organisations. Stefanie Burri lying emphasis on the importance of social sciences called upon the Vice Chancellor to establish the Department of Anthropology at GCU, for which, she said that UN would provide every possible support.


Later, Vittorio Cammarota and Prof Shah gave away the certificates to focal person Amna Anwaar Khan, and students including Memona Akram, Fatima Tuz Zohra, Ansa Khan, Frahan Ali, Muhammad Baseer, Muhammad Talha, Muhammad Umer Khan, Wijdan Akram, Narmeen Jacob and Hafiza Irfah Farooq for designing and painting the UN Wall .





GCU-QEC holds medical awareness camp


The Government College University Lahore Quality Enhancement (GCU-QEC) has organised medical and awareness camp about heart diseases for the free check-up of its faculty and staff members. Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Hassan Amir Shah inaugurated the camp, while GCU QEC Director Iram Sohail and eminent heart specialist Dr Aurangzeb Siddique Maan were also present.    


Speaking on the occasion, Dr Aurangzeb says that heart disease alone accounts for 35-40 percent of total disease burden in the overall Pakistan population, and according to the latest World Health Organisation (WHO) data, heart disease deaths in Pakistan has reached 111, 367 or 9.87pc of total deaths.


Vice Chancellor Prof Shah appreciated the initiative of organising the medical camp, saying that blood pressure and heart diseases are silent killers. He expressed gratitude to Dr Aurangzeb for giving his precious time for the healthcare of the university’s teachers and staff.


QEC Director Iram Sohail said that this year they had organised different awareness seminars and activities about dengue, cancer and naegleria virus for the welfare of faculty members, staff and students. Later, to encourage other faculty members, the Vice Chancellor himself undergone a full medical check for the heart at the camp.



Seminar on Naegleria Fowleri AT gcu

The speakers at an awareness seminar at the Government College University Lahore have stressed that only boiled or chlorinated water should be used for cleaning nose to prevent Naegleria Fowleri i.e. a brain-eating amoeba that inhabits in warm freshwaters and infects humans by entering the nose during water-related activities including swimming and ablution.

The seminar titled “Prevention and Control of Naegleria Fowleri” was organised by the university’s Quality Enhancement Cell on the special directions of Punjab government to raise awareness among teachers, staff and students about the fatal brain-eating amoeba that had reportedly claimed about 12 lives in Sindh in the last year.

In his keynote address, Fatima Jinnah Medical University Lahore Head of Paediatrics Prof Dr Rashid Mahmood said that the disease was 98 percent fatal but 100 percent preventable by taking simple precautionary measures during the water related activities. He said a total of about 440 cases of Naegleria Fowleri had been reported worldwide, out of which only three people survived. He said that more than 75 percent cases ofNaegleria Fowleri were reported in children. The doctor advised students to avoid swimming or diving in warm freshwater places during summer, putting the head under contaminated water and rinsing nasal sinuses through nose. He also clarified that the infections did not occur when this water was swallowed and only occurred when the amoeba entered through the nose. Prof Mahmood also highlighted the symptoms of the disease and its diagnostic procedures. However, he said in most of the cases the infection was diagnosed after the death of the patient.

GCU Zoology Department Chairperson Prof Dr Nusrat Jahan said that Naegleria Fowleri was a heat-loving, free-living amoeba (single-celled microbe), commonly found around the world in warm freshwater such as ponds, lakes, swimming pools, air-conditioning units, water pipes and  hot-water heaters and public drinking water systems. She said that once entered the nose, the amoeba travelled to the brain and caused a severe brain infection called Primary Meningoencephalitis (PAM), which was mostly fatal and patient died in just five to twelve days. Prof Nusrat Jahan said most patients in Karachi acquired this disease while performing the religious ablution 'wuzu' with tap water, contaminated with the amoeba, adding that proper chlorinated water should be ensured to prevent infection.

Speaking on the occasion, Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Hassan Amir Shah said that the Punjab government has launched the awareness campaign prior to the outbreak of this deadly disease which must be highly appreciated. He asked the students to take back the message home and spread awareness about Naegleria Fowleri among their family members and friends.

Quality Enhancement Cell Director Ms Iram Sohail said they had learnt about the amoeba in intermediate as a unicellular organism but after that never knew that it could be as harmful as the name Naegleria Fowleri suggested. She said that the danger of outbreak of this menace should be taken care of before it blew out of proportion. Students and faculty members from all departments of the university attended the seminar.



GCU Job Fair receives overwhelming response

A job fair at the Government College University Lahore Thursday received an enthusiastic response as hundreds of university graduates and final year students flocked to the Job Fair to explore employment and internship opportunities in reputed international and national organizations. Punjab Higher Education Commission Chairman Prof Dr Muhammad Nizamuddin was chief guest at the closing ceremony of the Job Fair organised by the university’s Career Guidance and Placement Centre under the guidance of Quality Enhancement Cell.  As many as 53 noted organizations including banks, IT firms, NGOs, manufactures and ecommerce websites set up their stalls at the GCU Job Fair 2015 and offered more than 400 internship and permanent placement opportunities to the university’s students and graduates. An interesting incident occurred during the job fair when the participating multinational firms and banks excused from philosophy students for not having any placement or internship opportunities for them.  The students argued with the recruitment managers that “all theories of management, marketing and sciences are given by the philosophers.”  They said that it was philosophy that made humans understand the fundamental nature of realityknowledgevalues and wisdom, and how could such reputed companies ignore the students studying “wisdom”.


Students and faculty members visit stalls at the Job Fair at the GC University Lahore.

Chairman Punjab HEC with Vice Chancellor GCU giving away certificate to the representative of the companies


The stalls of ecommerce websites also remained the centre of attraction at the Fair and students showed great interest in working for them as content writers, marketing managers and IT professionals. Students believed that ecommerce websites had bright future all across the world. A good number of private schools also participated in the Job fair to recruit Ravians as teachers.   


Speaking on the occasion, Punjab Higher Education Department Chairman Prof Dr Muhammad Nizam ud din said that there was wide gap between the universities curriculum and modern market demands, adding such job fairs played a vital role in bridging this gap. He revealed that he had got his first job in the United States from a job fair. He said that universities should also more often hold trainings on resume writing and interview skills for their students.


Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Hassan Amir Shah said the academic environment and co-curricular activities at GCU also concentrated on overall grooming, confidence-building and personality development of students which was the reason that the reputed companies preferred their students.    


GCU Quality Enhancement Cell Director Ms Iram Sohail said students are reflection of their teachers and the institutions they attend. She said that job fairs were a strategy to fast track the placement of students in reputed organisations. She said GCU didn’t charge any registration fee from any company and allocated huge fund from its budget for the professional career of their students.


Talking to media, GCU Placement Officer Mubashir Hassan said “the activity stands fruitful if even only one student gets a good job opportunity from it.” However, he was hopeful that more than one hundred students would get permanent job placements from this year job fair.


GCU Dean Faculty of Science and Technology Prof Dr Raiz Ahmed and Registrar Mr Saboor Khan also visited stalls of all companies and discussed with the company executives their recruitment polices and criteria.


Later, Prof Dr Nizam ud din gave away certificates to the representatives of the companies participated in the job fair.




GCU to hold trainings for universities’ staff


The Government College University Lahore Quality Enhancement (GCU QEC) is going to hold seven more training workshops on ‘Modern University Governance’ for non-teaching staff of universities of the provincial metropolis to edify their administrative and communication skills. It was announced by QEC Director Ms Iram Sohail while addressing the concluding ceremony of five-day indigenous on-campus training workshop organised by the university for its staff members in collaboration with the Learning Innovation Division, Higher Education Commission Pakistan (LID-HEC).


Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Hassan Amir Shah was the Chief Guest at the concluding ceremony while a large number academic and administrative head were also present. Addressing the ceremony, Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Hassan Amir Shah governance was a team effort and working of the university departments would certainly improve and became more efficient and effective when these staff members would transform their training into practice in the day-to-day affairs. He expressed gratitude to the Higher Education Commission for providing funds for the trainings, adding that these funds were being also utilised to train the staff members of other universities. 


Director Ms Iram Sohail said the GCU QEC had already held three trainings on ‘Modern University Governance (MUG) and had planned to hold seven more trainings, so that maximum staff members of the universities in the provincial metropolis could be benefited from them. She said adequate funds from HEC were available for these trainings. She said that participants from other universities had also participated in the first two trainings organised by QEC on IOT-MUG.  She said that these workshops played a crucial in social and professional networking of the staff members of different universities. Later, the Vice Chancellor gave away certificates to the participants of the training workshop. 



Governance must be efficient: GCU VC


Governance can’t be good until it is effective, efficient and transparent. Unnecessary delays and bottlenecks in system fail the good governance, said Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Hassan Amir Shah while addressing the inauguration of an indigenous on-campus training programme for the university staff at the Government College University Lahore. The deans and academic and administrative heads of GCU also attended the inaugural ceremony of the workshop.


The five-day training programme ‘Modern University Governance’, organised by the university’s Quality Enhancement Cell (QEC) in collaboration with Learning Innovation Division, Higher Education Commission (LID-HEC), is comprised of 15 technical sessions including intra-departmental communication, quality assurance, administrative skills, financial management, audit, information technology, hostel management and soft skills.  


Prof. Dr. Hassan Amir Shah Vice Chancellor GCU

addresses the inauguration of an

on-campus training programme.

The participants of training workshop pose for a

group photo with GCU Vice Chancellor

& other senior faculty members.



In his keynote address, the Vice Chancellor said that initiatives would yield positive results only if they were taken well on time. He said idealism was good but in the case of devising laws, procedures and rules and regulations, it was equally devastating. “Laws, procedures and rules must be well thrashed out in the light of ground realities and input of all stakeholders, so that their efficient and effective implementation can be ensured,” he added.


Prof Shah also laid a particular stress on inter-departmental harmony, saying “departments should be facilitating each other’s’ initiatives instead of unnecessarily blocking them.” He also said that universities should be very particular in selection of their staff members and their commitment, character and soft skills must be comprehensively judged besides the professional skills.


Talking about the objectives of the training, QEC Director Ms Iram Sohail said that GCU had actively participated, adopted and executed all the initiatives of HEC for betterment of their human resource. She said Modern University Governance Programme, commonly referred to as MUG, was initiated to equip the university’s non-teaching staff with latest governance and management tools to bridge the gap between administration and academia which they felt had increased during the past few years.  She also said that the workshop would address the issues identified in day-to-day administration and working of all departments. She said that the trainers would also lay a special emphasis on communication skills of the participants with the youth besides working on their social skills, language, interpersonal skills and leadership qualities. Ms Iram Sohail also expressed gratitude to HEC for granting Rs 3 million to GCU QEC last year for conducting workshops for non-teaching staff of higher education institutions. Later, GCU Treasurer also addressed the participants of the workshop on the public sector finance management.



Cancer awareness drive at GCU  


The Government College University Lahore Quality Enhancement Cell held an on-campus awareness drive in collaboration with the Pink Ribbon Pakistan and Higher Education Commission to raise awareness among the female students and staff members about the breast cancer. GCU Quality Enhancement Cell Director Ms Iram Sohail led the awareness campaign which was followed by a walk in which a large number of faculty and staff members participated. Speaking on the occasion, Ms Iram Sohail said that October was marked as Breast Cancer Awareness Month (BCAM) all over the world and this year with extensive support of administration GCU QEC held a mass awareness campaign for its female faculty members and students to make them aware about precautions, self-examination methods, and treatments for the breast cancer. She said that the main purpose of the walk was to eliminate social stigmas attached to the cancer.   



GCU holds training workshop for young teachers


The Quality Enhancement Cell of the Government College University Lahore has held a four-day training workshop for the young faculty members to edify their teaching and research skills. The university’s senior faculty members, who attended eight-week Faculty Professional Development Program of Higher Education Commission (HEC), cascaded the training to their colleagues at the workshop. The training comprised of twelve technical sessions including on curriculum development, learners’ psychology, assessment and evaluation, research methodology and communication skills. GCU Physics Department Chairman Prof Dr Raiz Ahmed was the chief guest at the closing ceremony, while Director Academic Planning and External Links Ms Fouzia Shaheen and master trainer Rubina Kokab were also present.


Speaking on the occasion, QEC Director Ms. Iram Sohail said the micro-teaching training technique was found to be very effective during the training through which the participants reviewed videotapes of their lectures to find out that what had worked which aspects had fallen short, and what needed to be done to enhance their teaching techniques. Ms Iram Sohail also said that six GCU faculty members had been given chance to go abroad for advanced training and they then cascaded the training to their colleagues. She hoped that the four-day intensive training had equipped teachers with modern techniques of interacting with students.


Physics Department Chairman Prof Dr Raiz Ahmed said that ultimate goal of all such trainings was to focus on the imparting quality education and knowledge to students. “Once you have opted for teaching as a profession it is binding on you to create an environment which will help in developing the learning and teaching process,” he told participants of the training workshop. He appreciated the hard work of master trainers and also congratulated participants on successfully completing the training.


While sharing their views about the training workshop, the participants said that they had learnt that teaching was not only about transferring knowledge about a specific subject, rather it was scientific method for character-building and personality development of students, besides it was also teachers’ responsibility to equip the students with necessary skills that helped them to excel in their professional fields.  




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