Colleges for the Lahore University of Management Sciences
26 January 2009 (collegiateway.org) — Here’s an exciting development: two faculty members at the Lahore University of Management Sciences, Mariam Durrani and Sohaib Khan, have just opened a new blog to discuss plans for the creation of a residential college system at their institution. It would be the first collegiate system at a Pakistani university.
LUMS is an ideal candidate for residential college conversion. It is a young and relatively small institution with about 2000 undergraduates, and it has ambitions to expand in the years ahead. The larger a university, the more difficult it is, logistically, to create residential colleges, so beginning the process while the campus is still small is very wise. Perhaps five or six colleges could be established now, to include not only the undergraduates but also the small population of graduate students. As the university grows, new college-units can be added one at a time—a process that can simplify overall institutional planning, since growth is no longer irregular but rather occurs in predictable 400-member units.
Durrani and Khan have written a fine discussion paper (pdf) that outlines the residential college idea and the benefits a collegiate system would bring to their campus—this is just the sort of document that any group of faculty interested in promoting residential colleges could develop for their own institution. Once the concepts are in circulation, the next step might be to supplement them with a proposed sequence for college creation, showing how all the pieces can be assembled.
We wish everyone at LUMS much success in this important work. They are in a position to make a very valuable contribution not only to generations of future students at their own institution, but also to higher education in Pakistan as a whole.