Islamabad, 1 December 2022 (TDI): Ambassador of the United State of America (US) to Pakistan, Donald Blome participated in the inauguration of the International Summit on Higher Education.

The officials from the University of Utah and the Federal Minister for Planning Development and Special Initiatives of Pakistan, Ahsan Iqbal were also present.

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The Summit was organized by the US-funded Higher Education System Strengthening Activity (HESSA). It aimed to highlight the role of higher education in the 21st century, focusing on the fluid nature of learning and employment.

Additionally, it also explored how universities can reposition themselves in this ever-changing landscape. While talking at the inaugural ceremony, Ambassador Blome highlighted the 75 years of partnership between the US and Pakistan.

In this vein, he added, “In a country where more than 60 percent of the population is below 30, we must continue to help youth achieve their full potential.”

At his turn, Ahsan Iqbal said that the government of Pakistan is open to improving the higher education system. He tasked Pakistani higher education officials to improve higher education.

The Minister also appreciated Pakistan’s 75-year partnership with the US government. He celebrated the support provided by the US government to academia through specialized investment in higher education.

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State Senator from Utah the US, Keith Grover stressed the role of higher education for youth. He reiterated, “It is the ultimate goal of an institute to provide necessary skills for youth so they can positively contribute to the workforce both locally & globally.”


Higher Education System Strengthening Activity (HESSA) is a project of the University of Utah (UU). It is established in collaboration with the government of Pakistan and the US Agency for International Development (USAID).

The project was launched in 2021 as a five-year project with a funding of $19 million. It aims to increase the employability of the Pakistani workforce through training to improve Higher Education graduate capacity, relevance, adequacy, and inclusivity.

Additionally, it encompasses baseline studies, strategic plans, study tours to US universities, and an inclusive financial aid system for students.