Pakistan’s Ambassador to the United States, Masood Khan, says youth and professionals play a key role in shaping the future of Pak-US relations.
Masood was addressing a welcome ceremony of a cohort of 51 young Pakistani undergraduate students currently visiting the United States under the Global UGRAD Spring 2023 Program at the Embassy of Pakistan Washington DC.
He said almost 1000 Pakistani professionals, government officials, civil society activists, journalists and others visit the United States annually, strengthening the ties between the two countries.
The ambassador said that programs such as UGRAD provide Pakistani students with an opportunity not only to learn advanced knowledge at prestigious US universities but also to help them create a better understanding of US society.
Masood Khan thanked the US State Department, United States Education Foundation Pakistan and International Research & Exchanges Board for their strong commitment towards the education exchange programs with Pakistan.
Ambassador Khan commended the young students on their selection, saying that the unique experience of studying in the US in Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics (STEM), social sciences, humanities and other disciplines would help them hone their skills.
He added that professional and cultural exchange programs, including Fulbright Student Program, Global UGRAD, YES, IVLP, SUSI and the Hubert Humphery Fellowship Program, are strong threads that cement the Pak-US relationship.
Highlighting multifaceted Pak-US cooperation, the ambassador also thanked the US government for its assistance in relief and recovery operations after massive floods hit the country. He said Pakistan looks forward to continued US support during the reconstruction and rehabilitation phase.
Molly Stephenson, Director Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs at the US Department of State, Steve Money, Deputy Director Office of the Academic Exchange Programs, Michael Dyer, Senior Project Director IREX and other officials accompanied the group during their visit to the embassy.
The visiting students would study at 47 different US institutions across 30 US States. Global UGRAD program annually provides one-semester scholarships to more than 200 outstanding undergraduate students.
Speaking on occasion, Molly Stephenson and Steve Dyer congratulated the students and appreciated their leadership qualities.
They said that the program’s purpose was to help talented Pakistani students broaden their horizons, explore new avenues for personal growth and create a better understanding among the people of the two countries.