The University of Health Sciences (UHS) announced that they will give away free Android tablets to deserving students of public sector medical and dental colleges for digital learning during the lockdown.
This was decided in a meeting under the chair of Vice-Chancellor Prof Javed Akram, held at UHS on Thursday, 4th June. Others present in the meeting included Allama Iqbal Medical College (AIMC), principal, Prof Arif Tajammul, Service Institute of Medical Sciences (SIMS), principal, Prof Mahmood Ayyaz, UHS registrar Dr. Asad Zaheer, controller of examinations Dr. Saqib Mehmood, and senior faculty.
VC Prof Javed Akram, addressing the meeting, said that the COVID-19 pandemic has turned into an endemic, and it is here to stay for a long time. Therefore people should learn to live with it.
He added that around four months of studies have already been wasted due to the pandemic and urged the medical colleges to implement e-learning without wasting more time.
There are subjects which can be taught through online classes. For clinical training, we must have contingency plans.
Prof. Javed Akram said that around twenty percent of students in public sector medical and dental colleges of the province belong to families with a very humble economic background. He informed that students belonging to less-fortunate families reported problems with online learning, much of it related to lack of equipment and poor internet connections.
For such students, the university will not only provide free Android tablets but also arrange satellite internet connectivity in collaboration with Punjab Information Technology Board.
He directed the heads and the principals of public sector colleges to provide a list of students who cannot afford to purchase the tablets, especially those belonging to families registered under the government’s Ehsaas and Benazir Income Support Programme.
A decision was made to constitute subject specialists’ committees under the supervision of Prof Mahmood Ayyaz to prepare online modules for various disciplines. The UHS VC designated SIMS as the nerve center for that purpose.