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UOL Sponsors 6th Deans, Directors Annual Conference
The University of Lahore (UOL) was among the Platinum (Main Campus) and Bronze (Gujrat Campus) sponsors of the 6th Deans and Directors Annual Conference organized by the National Business Education Accreditation Council (NBEAC) of Higher Education Commission (HEC) on April 8-9, 2019 at Pearl Continental Hotel, Lahore. Over 200 participants, including 100 Deans and Directors from 98 Business Schools across Pakistan attended this conference that had parallel workshops, panel discussions, seminars and policy roundtable dialogues centered on the theme of “The Evolving Landscape of Business Education across the Globe”. Dr. Farrukh Iqbal, Chairman NBEAC, acknowledged UOL’s support to this event at both inaugural and closing ceremonies. Several universities from all over Pakistan, government institutions and international NBEAC partners took part in this annual forum as sponsors and organizers.      
On top of remarkable sponsorship of this huge event, UOL was assigned with the responsibility of publicity and social media coverage of the conference, a duty that was executed to the satisfaction of NBEAC organizing team. In an email, dated April 11, 2019, addressed to Pro-Rector Social Sciences and Director Lahore Business School Mr. Wajeeha Raoof, Ms. Maryam Akhtar (Assistant Manager-Training & Development, NBEAC) wrote: “NBEAC secretariat would like to thank you and your team for handling the responsibility of “Publicity and Social Media Coverage” for the 6th Deans ad Directors conference 2019 held at PC Hotel-Lahore. We are grateful for the support provided by Ms. Maliha Farrukh and the volunteers of The University of Lahore in promoting and capturing the conference. Please accept our sincere appreciation for the professional conduct of UOL team regarding all the responsibilities assigned.” 
“Your involvement and interest towards our organization is a great support for us. We wish to continue a good working relation in future and look forward to your participation in the future events,” Ms. Akhtar added. Ms. Wajeeha in her capacity as LBS Director and Pro-Rector also congratulated UOL team for the job well done. Ms. Maliha Farrukh (LBS Programme Manager) led the UOL volunteers.  
UOL’s participation in this event was also strengthened by Ms. Wajeeha’s facilitation of a policy roundtable on “National Collaboration between Bussiness Schools” that was held on the second day of the conference. She highlighted the significance of international collaboration for educational institutions, challenges and opportunities of networking and linkages, joint projects and how Business Schools can attain international standards. "We can prosper as a nation and reach international standards, if we work together as teams, rather than working as competitors,” she observed. Her session was interactive to enable participating universities to socialize and come up with better solutions for their common problems.  

NBEAC was established by Higher Education Commission (HEC) in 2007 to assure quality in business education degree programs. It’s Deans and Directors Conference brings together more than 100 Deans and Directors of Business Schools for strategic level discussions. This year’s conference focused on the balance required between global paradigms versus the need to customize business education in Pakistan according to the local needs. 
Business Schools told to guide public policy, intensify collaborations 
While inaugurating the conference as the chief guest, Dr. Ishrat Husain, Advisor to PM on Institutional Reforms and Austerity called upon Business Schools in Pakistan to take a central role in public policy formulation, especially policies related to the economy. He said: “Business Schools must take a leading role in finding solutions to the economic problems of this country. Faculty members should be the ones hosted on television and radio talk shows to highlight pertinent issues of the economy.” 
Dr. Husain also advised Business Schools to emphasize experiential learning which can expose students to the real world issues instead of confining them to lecture theatres. He added that Schools must embrace the multidisciplinary approach in teaching saying that economics alone cannot solve all societal problems. He paid tribute to the late Dr. Hasan Murad, the founder of NBEAC and this conference for being an exemplary leader and practical person. Dr. Murad died in a car accident last year and all national speakers started their speeches evoking his legacy.   
In one of the plenary sessions on collaborations, Dr. Husain advised Business and Management Schools to build Centers of Excellence with capacity to attract both regional and international collaborations. “Build your own niche and be known for it. Centers of Excellence once established will attract many partners in building sustainable collaboration,” he said. Dr. Husain added that more tangible results of collaborations can better be realized through carrying out joint programmes and research with a comparative dimension. “There are still many opportunities of networking that Business Academic Institutions can exploit. Joint research projects combining three or five countries can help in comparing business situations in the region,” he added.        
In his welcome remarks, Dr. Farrukh Iqbal, Chairman NBEAC appreciated the contributions of the late Dr. Murad and featured a short video footage of his contribution. He observed that with the rising number of Business Schools and Programmes nationwide, Deans and Directors must be concerned about the quality of teaching and other statutory standards. He revealed that out of 142, only 21 schools are accredited by NBEAC. On a positive note, Dr. Iqbal said Pakistani business graduates are easily accommodated in the economies of the Middle East. He called upon Business Schools to observe the new regional and global changes related to the business environment and forge a way forward.      
The conference officially started with remarks by the Conference Convener – Dr. Kumail Abbas Rizvi (Professor of Finance & Group Coordinator, Lahore School of Economics). Quoting Allam Iqbal, Dr. Razvi highlighted the themes of the conference with an emphasis on the need to embrace the current trends and overcoming challenges through collaborations on national, regional and international fronts.
Other key conference recommendations for Business Schools: 
Embrace the global trends, diversity, partnerships and experiential learning,   
Vigorously look for national and international research grants, 
Explore partnerships with successful business companies and renowned institutions,
Consideration of cultural exchanges to augment the business environment in the region, 
Incorporation of CPEC and China as a successful business case study in the curricular, 
Secure suitable internship placement with giant Chinese business companies,       
Attract business entities to the academic institutions through joint applied research,
Make the faculty relevant to the industry through training,
Embrace the new digital technologies to enhance teaching and learning of students, 
Reshape the way Master of Business Administration (MBA) is taught, 
Re-invent the way teaching in done generally.




  • UOL Sponsors 6th Deans, Directors Annual Conference
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