Monday Message from President HU, Wasif Rizvi

Dear Habib University Community,

I hope and pray that you’re all safe and doing very well.

I want to start with sharing very guarded optimism about the coronavirus pandemic. There are ever so slight signs of slowing the growth of infection at a global level. Overall global mortality rate is slightly down as well. Pakistan continues to fare a bit better than the global average. It’s obvious that due to low testing rates in Pakistan, the overall numbers of infected can’t be ascertained. However extreme illness and mortality rates, which are difficult to ignore, remain manageable. In large part its due to good sensible local policies with the help of cooperation of a majority of citizens. There’s no other magic formula to manage this pandemic except to minimize exposure (stay at home), social distancing, and general disinfecting hygiene especially for hands. Major onus of responsibility to control the spread, remains on healthy and younger people who may be unwitting careers of virus, which we now know can infect others, just by having a normal conversation or even breathing.

As we move closer to our force majeure summer break, I have some updates;

For Students:

Student’s reflections & appreciation.

There are many reasons for us to be elated and humbled by the wonderful appreciation shown by a vast majority of our students for their faculty members and university at large. I want to especially acknowledge a beautiful tribute compiled by HUSG with the help of Marium Jamal & Maryam Feroze, for the whole faculty. Thank you Anzal, Roha, Safi & Mashal for showing such thoughtfulness. And thank you to all students who participated and graced this publication with their gratitude for the faculty members.

Similarly Omema Akhtar wrote a lovely and heartfelt blog about the tumultuous rollercoaster that coronavirus pandemic has put us on. This blog is written with a personal perspective of a senior’, who understandably are faced with many confusions and uncertainties. Omema’s reflections however are uplifting and hopeful and also filled with sincere gratitude and appreciation for her peers, faculty and the institution.

Summer Break:

Roughly six weeks of summer break start on April  18th till May 31st. Please coordinate with OAP and the registrar’s office for any clarification for individual and specific issues regarding catch up tutorials or summer classes.

Right now we are hoping to commence on-campus classes on June 1st. However in such a fluid and unpredictable situation please keep monitoring your emails for any change of schedule.

For Class of 2020:

We are hoping to host a controlled and small-size convocation on July 18th on campus. It is however subject to further adjustment and change of format.

For Faculty & Community:

In spirit of our robust continuation of progress in spite of this big disruption, I am honored to announce a great deal of enhancement in support of the office of Vice President Academic Affairs effective retrospectively from March 1st.

  • Dr. Aamer Hasan has been appointed as Associate Dean of Undergraduate Education
  • Dr. Anzar Khaliq has been appointed as Associate Dean of Teaching, Learning and Research
  • Dr. Shahid Shaikh has been appointed as Associate Dean of Academic Systems (Registrar) and operations.
  • Dr. Massimo Ramaioli has been appointed as Assistant Dean of the School of Arts Humanities and Social Sciences
  • Dr. Waqar Saleem has been appointed as Assistant Dean of the Dhanani School of Science and Engineering

Vice President Academic Affairs and Dean of Faculty, Dr. Chris Taylor, will be sending a detailed announcements of these appointments along with their scope of responsibilities.  All of these five faculty members are either from our founding faculty or have been with our young institution for few years. They have repeatedly shown exemplary leadership in various roles and assignments. Habib University is indebted to their service and dedication. Many congratulations to them.

For Staff:

Work is underway to reconfigure the campus when/if we return on campus. Let’s hope the warm weather is a good and positive omen for slowing down of the spread of coronavirus and with necessary precautions we can return to on campus work. Operations and HR will be in more detailed communications with everyone regarding that.

I want to close today with a simple tribute to extraordinary and noble heroes, from cleaning crew, doctors, nurses, and anyone staking their health on the front line of this pandemic around the world; “Not all heroes wear capes…but a whole dedicated bunch of them wear scrubs”.  Something to think about when we organize our next HU-CON.

With warm and sincere wishes & Duas,

Wasif A. Rizvi


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