USAID-funded Merit and Needs-Based Scholarship Program are open apply now. USAID has shown its commitment to support the program of scholarship for academically qualified Pakistani students, who aspire to continue higher studies, but due to lack of financial resources are unable to continue. It has supported scholarships for meritorious but financially disadvantaged students since 2004 through USAID-funded Merit and Needs-Based Scholarship Program (MNBSP) Phase-I to assist the Government of Pakistan’s efforts to raise enrolment in Pakistani universities and meet international standards. Phase-I of the program at a cost of US$ $10.63 million was implemented in 11 top public and private universities of Pakistan and 1,807 scholarships were given in fields of Agriculture and Business only. Many of the graduates of this initial phase of MNBSP (Phase-I) were the first in their families to complete a higher education degree and nearly half now support their families through respectable jobs.

In 2013, USAID launched second phase of the program at a total estimated cost of US$23.1 million. Under Phase-II, 3000 scholarships are added whereas 50 percent of the scholarships are reserved for the female students. In addition to eleven existing partner universities, 19 additional public sector institutions are also included, bringing the total to 30 partner universities across Pakistan. To emphasize on girls’ education, four female universities i.e. Lahore College for Women University, Fatima Jinnah Women University Rawalpindi, Sardar Bahadur Khan Women Quetta, and Shaheed Benzair Bhutto Women University Peshawar have also been included under the program. Overall, ten universities from Punjab, five from Khyber Pakthukhwa, three from Balochistan, four from Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT), six from Sindh, one from Gilgit- Baltistan and Azad Jammu & Kashmir are implementing MNBSP Phase-II making it a nationwide program.

New disciplines such as Engineering and Technology, Medicine, Nursing and Social Sciences have also been included under the gamut of the program. New component of Phase-II is the Capacity Building Trainings and Workshops, which has been incorporated to enhance and build capacity of the officials of the participating institutions and HEC for the operational and financial management of MNBSP. Selected students under the program are also trained through career path workshops to prepare them for future job challenges and make them aware of market trends. The program also works on strengthening its alumni network.

USAID-funded Merit and Needs-Based Scholarship Program Eligibility Criteria

  • Be eligible to secure admission as per university requirements in a respective degree program covered under this scholarship scheme
  • Secure a new admission in an offered degree program at a participating University / Institution
  • The candidate must demonstrate financial need as per criteria

USAID-funded Merit and Needs-Based Scholarship Program financial support

What does the scholarship cover?

The Needs Based Scholarship program covers funds for the following expenses:

  • Tuition Fee
  • Books
  • Boarding & Lodging
  • Transportation
  • Other Academic Costs

How To Apply for USAID-funded Merit and Needs-Based Scholarship Program

  • Deserving students can apply for scholarship on
  • Application forms are also available at the respective University’s Financial Aid Office.
  • Completed forms along with the necessary documents will be submitted to the same Financial aid Office, HEC will NOT accept any application form directly.

Scholarship Selection Process of USAID-funded Merit and Needs-Based Scholarship Program


  • The applications of all potential candidates are reviewed by the Institutional Scholarship Award Committee (ISAC). The committee is headed by the Vice Chancellor of the participating institution, along with members from the institution as well as external members. This is done to ensure impartiality and transparency.
  • The ISAC recommends potential candidates to the HEC Scholarship Management Committee (SMC). The committee includes top Executives of HEC, representatives from the participating institutions, and eminent scholars. The SMC undertakes a thorough review before approving eligible cases.
  • After finalization of awardees’ list, the participating institutions will forward the funds to the selected students.


List of Participating Universities for USAID-funded Merit and Needs-Based Scholarship Program

University NameFocal Person
Agriculture and Veterinary Science
University of Agriculture, FaisalabadDr. Hafeez and Rana Qamer
Agricultural University PeshawarMr. Habib Ullah Tariq
Sindh Agriculture University,TandojamMr. Nauman Ali Shah
PMAS-Arid Agriculture University Rawalpindi,Mr. Waqas Chaudhary
Lasbela University of Agriculture, Water and Marine Sciences, Uthal Balochistan (only Agriculture)Dr. Gulawar and Mr. Haji Fayaz
Business Administration and Others
Quaid-i-Azam University IslamabadMr. Chaudry Zulfiqar
IBA-SukkurMr. Mansoor
IBA-KarachiMr. Moeid Sultan
Institute of Management Sciences, PeshawarMr. Shaheryar Khan, Mr. Abdullah Afridi
Balochistan University of Information Technology, Engineering and Management SciencesMr. Muhammad Shah Khan
Lahore University of Management SciencesMs. Rabia Ahmed
Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto Institute of Science and Technology (SZABIST)Ms. Jaya S. Loungani
Medical and Nursing
University of Health Sciences, LahoreDr. Asad Zaheer
Khyber Medical University, PeshawarMr. Nasir Saleem
Engineering and Technology
Pakistan Institute of Engineering and Applied Sciences, IslamabadDr. Anila Usman
University of Engineering & Technology PeshawarMr. Nek Muhammad Khan
Mehran University of Engineering & Technology, JamshoroProf. Dr. Tauha Hussain Ali
COMSATS Institute of Information Technology (CIIT)Dr. Izhar Hussain
National University of Sciences & Technology (NUST) IslamabadMr. Saleem Daoud
University of Engineering and Technology- LahoreDr Ikhlaq Ahmed
Lahore University of Management SciencesMs. Rabia Ahmed
Balochistan University of Information Technology, Engineering and Management SciencesMr. Muhammad Shah Khan
Social Sciences and others
Quaid-i-Azam University IslamabadMr. Chaudry Zulfiqar
Sardar Bahadur Khan Women’s University, QuettaMs. Huma Tariq
Shaheed Benazir Bhutto Women University, PeshawarMs. Nain
Fatima Jinnah Women University, RawalpindiMs. Saba Nawaz
University of Azad Jammu & Kashmir (ajku), Muzaffarabad, Azad KashmirMr.  Murad Hussain
University of the Punjab, LahoreMr. Muhammad Anwar
University of Karachi, KarachiMr. Ahsan
Lahore College for Women University (LCWU) LahoreMs. Hina Anwar
Karakurum International University, GilgitProf  Dr Muhammad Ramzan
Islamia University BahawalpurMr. Zulqarnain Ahmad Malik
Bahauddin Zakariya University, MultanMr. Intikhab Alam
    Download forms

  • Scholarship Application Form
  • Application Sumission Guidlines
  • Deed of agreement

Frequently asked questions (FAQ) about USAID-funded Merit and Needs-Based Scholarship Program

Are applicants enrolled in universities/institutions outside of Pakistan eligible for the scholarship?

No. The scholarship will only be offered to applicants who are enrolled in selected participating public sector Pakistani universities.

Does this scholarship p rovide any total or partial assistance to students who are studying in other Pakistani universities outside of the HEC selected institutes?

This scholarship will not provide any assistance to students who are studying in institutions other than the HEC selected institutes.

What is the application process? Do I need to re-apply every year?

After being admitted to the selected university, you can apply directly for financial aid. The financial aid form will be made available with the Administration Office of the university. You can return it to the same office for submission. Once you are selected under this program, you will not need to apply every year.

What are the eligibility criteria for these scholarships?

Any financially constrained students enrolled in the selected university/DAI are eligible to apply. For further details, check the Eligibility Criteria page.

What kind of expenses will be covered in a fully funded scholarship?

The scholarship covers the full tuition fee for the duration of the entire course (i.e. 2 years graduate and 4 years undergraduate program). The scholarship also provides living expenses, cost of transportation, books and any other relevant requirements of the student.

Can I apply for admission in any of the participating university for admission?

Yes you can apply to any of the participating universities when they offer the admission.

How can I apply for the university admission?

Please see the participating university schedule for the admission in the relevant programs.

How can I receive an application form?

The application form is available on HEC website (downloads) and participating University web site/Financial Aid Office.

I have completed my matriculation. Can I apply for this scholarship?

No, these scholarships are only for Undergraduate and Graduate level.

I am studying in the third semester of the relevant course, am I eligible for this scholarship?

Yes, previously enrolled students can apply for this scholarship.

I am already availing financial assistance/scholarship from university / institute. Am I eligible for this scholarship?

No, the students already availing financial assistance/scholarship from universities/institutes are not eligible to apply.

Which are the selected participating universities?

You can see the details of selected participating universities on the official Website of Higher Education Commission

Is it possible to transfer the awarded scholarship from a selected university/institute to another one?

No. As per provision it is not possible to transfer the scholarship from a selected university/institute to any other university/institute.

Contact USAID-funded Merit and Needs-Based Scholarship Program

For any query feel free to contact HEC Call Centre 

UAN: 111-119-432(HEC) 

 0334 – 111 9432(9HEC)


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