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Pak-USAID Merit and Needs Based Scholarship Program 2014 phase II


Higher Education Commission (HEC) aims to elevate the socio-economic position of the needy & deserving students by providing access to quality education through needs-based scholarships. Government of Pakistan (GOP) has also duly acknowledged the financial constraints barring students from acquiring higher education and has thus earmarked substantial funds for the improvement of education sector.

According to the national income statistics(by GOP), 80 percent of the families in Pakistan cannot afford the expenses of sending even one boarder to a local public university. Pakistan finished last among a group of 40 countries ranked by the Percentage Share of Enrollment in Private Higher Education (A study by World Bank, 1994) , (Higher Education: The Lessons of Experience, 1994). On September 11, 2002, the GOP formed the Higher Education Commission (HEC) through a Cabinet Ordinance with a “mandate to transform institutions of higher education into world class seats of learning.”

The Higher Education Commission in partnership with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) has been offering Scholarships of financially disadvantaged students to study Agriculture and Business Administration Programs since 2004. The USAID is committed to play its role in the progress and development of the higher education sector especially in the fields of energy, agricultural sector, economic development and humanitarian assistance.


The Pak-USAID Merit and Needs based Scholarship Program Phase-II are focused on providing opportunities for access to higher education especially to under privileged candidates who, despite possessing academic merit, are unable to finance their education. The scholarship is not restricted to tuition only, but extends to accommodation and living expenses.

The Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) has approved the program at a total cost of Rs. 2,954.808 million in its meeting held on 6th September 2013. The Project is funded by Government of United States of America as Grant in Aid.

The Phase-I of the program was initiated in 2004 at eleven (11) universities with scope of 1807 scholarships. It is the pride of the program that all the scholarships are awarded, 94 percent of the scholarship recipients had graduated in the semester they expected to graduate.


1.To enable the academically qualified, yet financially needy, Pakistani students to continue university studies in selected private and public universities of Pakistan in the fields of Agriculture, Medical, Business, Social Science and Engineering


2. To enhance the institutional capacity of the Higher Education Commission of the Government of Pakistan and local public and private sector universities in designing and implementing MNBSP Phase II



1.  The applicant must be a Pakistani/AJK National


2.   Financial assistance & scholarships are available for study at undergraduate & graduate level in the prescribed disciplines at the selected 31 Pakistani universities and degree awarding institutions


a. Agricultural & Veterinary Sciences
b. Business Administration
c. Social Sciences
d. Engineering & Tech.
e. Medical


I. Agricultural (incl. Veterinary Sciences and Bio Technology)
II. Social Sciences includes (Peace &Conflict Studies, Anthropology, Archaeology, Economics, Linguistics, Law, Communication and Media studies, International Relations, and Psychology)
III. 50% Female Seats: Women’s participation in the education sector is very low. This activity will ensure that at least 50% of the awarded scholarships go to women, especially those coming from remote and vulnerable areas of Pakistan, who are financially needy, and meet admission criteria of the selected 31 partner universities


3.  Students need to compete for securing admission in the approved discipline at the participating institution as per admission policy of the institution and be enrolled in Undergraduate (4 and 5 ) and Graduate (2 Years and 3.5 years) programs


4.  Only those students who are enrolled in first semester/ professional year in the respective courses offered by the participating institutions are eligible to apply


5.  The eligibility of a candidate is linked to neediness of the candidate as determined & assessed by the financial background of his/her family




The deserving students can obtain complete Scholarship Application Form from the Financial Aid Office (FAO) at the participating University/Institution or can be downloaded.

The Scholarship Form will be submitted along with supporting documents to the same FAO office after completion.

Students need to get admission in any one of the approved disciplines (Agriculture & Veterinary sciences, Business Administration, Social Sciences, Engineering & Tech., Medical) at the participating Universities/Institutions as per their admission criteria.

Please note that partial scholarship for already enrolled students is not covered under this program.



 Scholarship Application Form:




Comprehensive scholarship  offered under this program provides funds for the following expenses:

  • Tuition Fee
  • Lodging
  • Transportation
  • Books
  • Other Academics Costs

Students at both private & public sector institutes have found the scholarship extremely helpful in sustaining their educational expenses.



Please consider this page as the first resource for answers to queries about scholarships for Undergraduate and Graduate Programs. If you do not find answers to your questions from the following, please send an email to [email protected]

What is the eligibility for this scholarship?

Students, who have secured admission or expected to get admission and must be enrolled in 1st semester in the relevant approved disciplines of participating universities/institutions for academic session Spring/Fall and can’t pursue their education because of financial constraints are eligible to apply.


Can I apply directly to Higher Education Commission?

HEC do not entertain direct application forms. HEC only accept applications through partner universities/institutions as mentioned in list on website/advertisement.


Which are the Selected Participating Universities/Institutions?

The detail of selected participating universities/institutions is available on the official Website of Higher Education Commission, Islamabad. Please click below link for further information


How do I obtain scholarship application form at partner universities/institutions?

The Financial Aid Offices (FAOs) or Students Resource Centers (SRCs) can be visited for obtaining scholarship application form or any relevant information pertaining to PAK-USAID Merit and Needs Based Scholarship Program. Furthermore, scholarship application form can be download from the official web site of HEC ( Please click below link to download scholarship application form.


How do I register for universities/institutions Admission test(s)?

Regular admission process as per the university/institution criteria has to be followed. If the applicant meet the basic university/institution admission criteria, the university will consider the application and will issue the admission test slip.

Is there any scholarship application processing fee?
There is no scholarship application processing fee.

Can I submit application after the deadline?
Application after the university’s/institution’s deadline will not be entertained; therefore, we encourage you to submit application well before the deadline in order to avoid any inconvenience.

If I get supporting documents in late will it negatively impact on my application?
Shortlisting for the scholarship awards is subject to the confidential criteria according to merit and financial assistance need. It is in your best interest to apply and submit all the required documents early. Please make sure that you strictly follow the deadline for the submission of scholarship application form along with the necessary supporting documents.

Does USAID funded Merit &Need Based Scholarship assist the students to study in USA?
This scholarship does not assist the students to study in any foreign University. US Need Based Scholarship offer scholarships to the students who are going to be enrolled in any of the approved disciplines only in selected participating Pakistani Universities/institutions.

Does this scholarship provide any partial assistance to the students who are studying non-partner Pakistani Universities/Institutions?
This scholarship does not provide any partial assistance to the students who are studying in other Pakistani Universities/Institutions.

After getting scholarship, do I need to re-apply every year?
Once you selected under this scholarship program, you don’t need to apply again every year.

What kind of expenses are covered under this scholarship program?
Scholarship cover full tuition fee for entire course (i.e. 02/03/3.5 Years Graduate & 04 Years Undergraduate courses). Scholarship also covers living expenses, cost of transportation, books and any other academic cost requirements of the student.

I am already availing financial assistance/scholarship from university/institution. Am I eligible for this scholarship?
No, the students already availing financial assistance/scholarship from universities/institutions are not eligible to apply.

Is it possible to transfer the awarded scholarship from selected University/Institution to other University/Institution?
As per provision, it’s not possible to transfer the scholarship from selected University/Institutionj to any other University/Institution.

I am a student from Baluchistan, can I apply for the university/institution in Punjab or in any other province of Pakistan?
Yes. You can apply in any Partner University/institution located in any Province of Pakistan

What is the selection criteria?
For detailed selection criteria, please visit the official web site of HEC ( click below link for further detail.

I am enrolled in XYZ university, can I apply for social science?
Detailed list of our partner universities/institutions along with approved disciplines are available on the official web site of HEC ( You can apply as per partner university/institution admission policy.

Social Science is the broader field, what are the subjects covered in this discipline?

Detailed list of subjects covered under approved disciplines are available on the official web site of HEC (