Pakistani Undergraduate Students Prepare for a Semester in the United States


Islamabad, December 9, 2016 – Approximately 90 Pakistani undergraduate students attended a pre-departure orientation in Islamabad today in preparation for their upcoming semester of study in the United States through the U.S. Government-funded Global Undergraduate Exchange Program (Global UGRAD).  Since its launch in 2010, more than 1,000 Pakistani students have participated in the program.

U.S. Embassy Deputy Chief of Mission Jonathan Pratt congratulated the students on being selected for the program, which is managed by the U.S. Educational Foundation in Pakistan (USEFP).

“It’s inspiring to see so many impressive young people gathered together, ready to embark on a new adventure,” Pratt said.  “I am proud that the United States can play a role in advancing your education.”

Pakistani Global UGRAD participants hail from all four provinces of Pakistan, as well as Gilgit-Baltistan, the Federally Administered Tribal Areas, Azad Jammu and Kashmir, and Islamabad Capital Territory.  They represent a broad range of academic fields including the humanities, basic sciences, engineering, and business administration.

“Young women make up an impressive fifty-seven percent of this cohort,” USEFP Executive Director Rita Akhtar said.  “We congratulate them and their families for encouraging them to take part in this wonderful academic experience.”

Spring 2016 Global UGRAD participant Muhammad Saif-ul-Islam commented that the exchange program was a transformative experience for him.

“Thanks to Global UGRAD, I am no longer uncomfortable stepping out of my comfort zone.  Those four months helped me build my confidence, overcome my fears, and get a taste of who I could be in the future,” Saif-ul-Islam said.  “Even though it was tough at times, I realized how to manage crises big and small.  I have transformed into a highly motivated person brimming with confidence.”

USEFP is a bi-national commission established in 1950 by the governments of Pakistan and the United States.  Its mission is to promote mutual understanding between the people of Pakistan and the United States through educational and cultural exchange programs.  For more information, please visit  For more information about the U.S. Embassy’s activities in Pakistan, please visit