| On 14th March 2017, a group of foreign students studying in COMSATS Institute of Information Technology (CIIT) received an orientation session at COMSATS Secretariat in Islamabad. The group, comprising of 10 students from 7 developing countries, is being inducted as interns for the duration of their stay in Pakistan. The students from four COMSATS’ Member States and three other countries belong to Bangladesh, Cameroon, Ethiopia, Gambia, Iran, Nepal and Nigeria. The students from Member States are availing graduate and post-graduate scholarships offered by CIIT to Member States. These students are enrolled in Ph.D (Biosciences and Mathematics); M.S. (Biochemistry & Molecular Biology and Mathematics) and B.S. (Management Sciences, and Telecom Engineering), as well as research scholars in the fields of bio-sciences and physics.
The students accompanied by CIIT officials were shown around the premises of the Secretariat, followed by a briefing from senior officials of COMSATS Secretariat and CIIT. The group was received by Dr. Abdul Aziz Khan, Advisor CIIT. They were introduced to COMSATS as a high-level forum of developing countries striving for their socio-economic uplift through cooperation and collaboration in S&T. COMSATS’ organizational structure, role of various statutory bodies and various programmes of COMSATS were also explained for their knowledge.
The Executive Director COMSATS, Dr. S. M. Junaid Zaidi, also graced the briefing session with his presence. He encouraged the students to probe into various folds of the organizational structure of COMSATS to enhance their learning about their organization. He presented the organization as an agent and facilitator of cooperation among the developing countries.
Speaking on the occasion, Dr. Abdul Aziz Khan underscored the importance of the students’ engagement in COMSATS Secretariat both for them and for the organization. He noted that their role at the Secretariat would primarily be of ambassadorial nature, as they would not only be representing their countries at the organization but would also be representing COMSATS back home. He believed that their association with an international organization, such as COMSATS, will add to their credentials. He believed that the same should complement their academic pursuits, with due importance given to their studies. Underscoring the scope and mandate of COMSATS, he believed that the students would best utilize their time at COMSATS Secretariat to help identify their countries’ priorities and problem areas for more focused collaboration among them. They were also encouraged to facilitate liaison with their countries in order to enhance membership of COMSATS’ Commission and Network. In particular, they could help identify suitable S&T/R&D and higher education institutions in their countries for inclusion in the network of Centres of Excellence.
The students asked questions relating to various activities of COMSATS and its membership and pledged to contribute to do their due share to help COMSATS achieve its objectives.