A master's degree program offering gender and women's studies was recently established at Kabul University. South Korea funded the program that runs in coordination with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP).
In an interview with Sada e Azadi, Dr. Safiullah Jalalzai spokesman for the Ministry of Higher Education said that the master's degree program is an extension of the Faculty of Social Sciences at Kabul University. "27 students including 19 women have started studying in the first class of this program after passing entry exams and interviews," he explained.
Addressing gender equality and women's issues are essential needs of the society.
"Many problems escalate as a result of lack of awareness about legal rights and responsibilities," Dr. Jalalzai added. "Men and women in this comprehensive program will learn advocacy and practical steps towards gender equality in the Afghan society."
Ghulam Farooq Abdullah Head of the Faculty of Social Sciences is proud that his faculty hosts this program. "We are taking a significant step toward institutionalizing gender and women studies in Afghanistan. Through a comprehensive curriculum for the participants we hope to play a key role in gender equality in our country," he said.
This program is a positive step towards a bright future for women. Sharifa Mirzakhel, one of the students of this program, is happy to have this opportunity. "I feel that I am carrying a big responsibility on my shoulders for the women in our country," she explained. "Educated at the master's level, I will have to apply my knowledge and implement practical steps to help women in different aspects of life."
Musafir Quqandi, another participant, is thankful to the international community for establishing a much-needed program locally accessible to men and women in Afghanistan. "To further my education, I am pleased to have gender studies at the master's degree level available here in Kabul University."