Seventy-five alumni of the U.S. Embassy’s English Access Microscholarship Program gathered in Islamabad July 16-17 for Pakistan Access Alumni Reconnect, a two-day conference focused on building skills to enable participants to successfully lead community development initiatives and to promote the study of the English language in their communities across Pakistan.
“These English-language teachers and students have already demonstrated impressive leadership skills and a passion for their communities,” U.S. Embassy Regional English Language Officer Jen MacArthur said. “Each of them has the potential to make a lasting, positive impact on communities across Pakistan, and I look forward to seeing what they achieve in the coming years.”
The conference participants, who hailed from all across Pakistan, gained new technical and problem-solving skills relating to community development, engaged in team-building activities, and completed a community service project at Daman-e-Koh garden.
“I am excited to connect with old peers again and conduct alumni activities to benefit our communities,” said Shan Elahi, who participated in the Access Program from 2014 to 2016 in Kasur.
Nearly 3,000 students across Pakistan currently participate in the U.S. Embassy’s English Access Microscholarship Program. Since the program’s launch in Pakistan in 2004, more than 11,000 talented 13- to 20-year-olds from all over Pakistan have received after-school English language classes and other intensive training through the program. Participants gain the ability to compete for and participate in future exchanges and study in the United States. More information about the U.S. Department of State’s Office of English Language Programs can be found at AmericanEnglish.state.gov.