A visit to NED University of Engineering & Technology
When I was invited to speak at NED’s IT Exhibition and Conference on August 23, I initially said i couldn’t be there because I was booked on a flight to Lahore that same morning. However, when I was told that half the Computer Science class was young women and that it would be extremely motivating for the students if I could somehow manage to go and speak there, I had to stop and think.
The NEDians are persuasive to say the least and so I juggled my schedule and decided to take the afternoon flight to Lahore so that I could go to ITEC in the morning.
And I am sure glad I did. From the moment I stepped onto their campus, I met some very bright and motivated young people who had obviously put in a lot of time and effort into organizing the event. The faculty, the Head of Computer Science Mr. M.Khan Pathan, the Pro Vice Chancellor and the Vice Chancellor were also very warm and welcoming. It was obvious that they were proud of their students and especially Masroor, the young man who had visualized ITEC and he and the rest of the team had worked very hard to implement it.
This was the first time that an event of this kind was held at NED. It comprised a conference segment, an inter-university software competition, a gaming competition, software projects and a logic quiz. Some of the projects developed by the youngsters were really very cutting edge and provided solutions to problems that businesses are facing as well as problems faced by the community.
During the conference segment I spoke about the size and growth of the industry over the past 5 years and highlighted the amout of innovation taking place in the Pakistan ICT sector – some of it driven by companies while some of it is driven by highly energized young people fresh out of universities. I talked about the contribution women were making to the sector and how some companies were creating flexible programs that would create more opportunities for women to join the ICT workforce without neglecting their other responsibilities.
It was good to see that IT companies like Folio 3, Kalsoft, Mazik and Intel were sponsors of this event. I am sure that everyone involved in ITEC is happy with the results. Well done kids! It is great to see the energy and the commitment and professionalism.
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