Alumni in Pakistan recognised at international awards

Two Sheffield alumni in Pakistan have been recognised for their achievements at a ceremony held at the British Deputy High Commission in Karachi. The awards were presented by special guests including University of Sheffield alumna Dr Urooj Mumtaz, who plays for Pakistan’s national women’s cricket team.

The Education UK Alumni Awards celebrate the achievements of alumni from UK universities who are now living in Pakistan and have gone on to achieve success in their professional careers. The awards aim to demonstrate the impact that a UK education can have upon individuals and countries around the world, as well as to inspire others to reach their potential by studying in the UK. The awards will be held in 10 countries including Brazil, China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Nigeria, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Turkey and the USA.

The Professional Achievement Award, recognising alumni who have distinguished themselves through exemplary leadership and achievements in their professional industry, was presented to Jahanzeb Awan who studied Law at the University of Sheffield.

After being called to the Bar by the Honourable Society of Lincoln's Inn, Jahanzeb became a Partner at one of Pakistan’s leading law firms. He provides litigation and advisory services to high profile clients including the State Bank of Pakistan and has achieved major litigation success in a short period of time.

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Jahanzeb also serves as the convener of a civil rights and engagement project. The project aims to strengthen Pakistani citizen rights and democratic processes, empowering citizens to know and exercise their rights.

He received his award from former Pakistan national women’s cricket team captain Dr Urooj Mumtaz, who studied Restorative Dentistry at the University.

Jahanzeb said: "The impact of the four years that I spent in the UK as a student has been enormous and it was undoubtedly the most defining period of my life."

Alongside Jahanzeb, Dr Nousheen Zakaria was first runner-up in the Entrepreneurial Award, for alumni who are active in initiating, or contributing to, innovative new business opportunities with strong growth prospects.

Nousheen earned her PhD in Strategic HRM at the University of Leeds, after gaining her MSc in Management at the University of Sheffield. As Co-Founder and CEO of Out of the Box Ltd, U.K and The Code It Company, Pakistan, she is responsible for releasing some of the newest and most innovative apps and websites to support the local industry as well as global clients. She provides equal-employment opportunities to people with special needs. Nousheen’s UK study experience enhanced her critical thinking skills and has helped her be the entrepreneur that she is today.

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Miles Stevenson, Director of Alumni and Donor Relations at the University of Sheffield, said: "On behalf of all of us here at the University I would like to express our warm congratulations to Jahanzeb and Nousheen.

"We are a global university and these awards are a fine example of the impact our alumni have in their home countries. Jahanzeb and Nousheen's stories will no doubt serve as an inspiration to our other international alumni in more than 120 different countries."

Peter Upton, Director of British Council Pakistan, said: "We celebrate and congratulate the finalists for their outstanding professional success and contribution to Pakistan. The Education UK Alumni awards are all about honouring the success of UK alumni whose achievements in Pakistan have been to some extent influenced by their positive experiences of studying in the UK."

The Education UK Alumni Awards 2016 in Pakistan received a huge number of high quality applications out of which 11 finalists were selected through a competitive process. Pakistan is also among the top ten countries with the highest number of UK graduates. Every year approximately 7000 Pakistanis select the UK as their destination to complete their undergraduate and postgraduate studies. The UK remains the preferred overseas higher education destination for Pakistanis, who then take up leadership roles in various industries throughout the world.