Washington, D.C. — The Institute for Global Engagement (IGE) is pleased to announce the Global Engagement Fellows Program, in partnership with the University of Science and Technology, Bannu, NWFP. This program is the result of an MOU signed in October 2005 between the NWFP Chief Minister and the Institute’s President, Chris Seiple, pledging to promote mutual understanding between Pakistan and the United States, and between Muslims and Christians.

The Global Engagement Fellows Program establishes a 4-year scholarship for 16 students to attend UST Bannu, beginning in September 2006. Keeping in view the socio-economic situation in the areas around Bannu, the Institute has designated some of the scholarships particularly for women, religious minorities, and students from the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA).

The Program was established following the visit of an interfaith delegation of Americans who came to NWFP in May 2006 at the invitation of Chief Minister Durrani. The delegation was hosted at UST Bannu by Vice Chancellor Dr. Asmat Ullah Khan, and spent time meeting with the students of the university. The Institute’s President, Chris Seiple, explains, “There are, unfortunately, many misconceptions between Americans and Pakistanis, and between Christians and Muslims. After visiting NWFP and seeing the great promise of the new university in Bannu, and the leadership of Vice Chancellor Dr. Asmat, we wanted to find ways to contribute to the lives of young people in this area. We hope that this program allows us to learn from each other, and build understanding between our countries and our faiths.”