Concerted efforts are being made to improve the quality of higher education in public and private-sector universities, the minister concerned says.
Higher Education Minister Farida Momand said quality higher education was central to the progress and prosperity of a country. No nation could make progress without a sound system of education, she added.
Addressing a graduation ceremony at the Bakhtar University in Kabul on Friday evening, the minister noted three decades of conflict had badly damaged higher education, like other sectors, in Afghanistan.
But in recent years, she explained, a lot of progress had been made by public and private-sector educational institutes. Although many students had made it to universities, the quality of education needed to be improved, she acknowledged.
Her ministry was trying to boost higher education standards in the country, she said, asking private-sector universities to focus on better teaching standards. In the absence of quality education, she argued, graduates could not make much of a difference.
Presidential Advisor on Cultural Affairs Prof. Asadullah Ghazanfar told the participants that education, not money, enabled a country to progress. For instance, he said, several Gulf countries had enormous oil resources, but remained backward technologically.
On the other hand, Singapore -- the size of one Afghan district -- was among the leading countries of the world, the advisor pointed out. “Your graduation is an encouraging sign of our future,” he commented, addressing the students.
Chancellor Abdul Latif Roshan told Pajhwok Afghan News it was the first batch graduating from the university since its founding in 2007. He said 150 students had received Master’s degrees in economics while 450 completed their graduation. At the moment 4,000 students are enrolled in the university.
Jamal Ahmad Kakar, one of the graduates, said he had studied under difficult circumstances. He had to support his family and continue education simultaneously.
The graduate urged the university administration to pave the ground for quality education in the country. He also called for the government to ensure jobs for the graduates.