Founding an Afghan Women's University

by Creating Hope International (CHI)
Founding an Afghan Women's University

Gawhar Shad University was founded in 2003 by CHI's project partner the Afghan Institute of Learning (AIL) in response to the lack of post-secondary education opportunities for Afghan women. Today, the University has three curriculum tracks; the College of Nursing/Health Education, the College of Math and Computer Science, and the College of Education.

The Nursing/Health Education program provides students with a broad knowledge-base and skill set in nursing, health education, vaccination, midwifery, and disease prevention. This six-month intensive course requires students to complete practical as well as classroom work and provides instruction on over 100 medical topics. Graduates are in high demand by employers because there are so few skilled Afghan female health professionals and a strong cultural preference that Afghan women receive health services from other Afghan women. Some Nurse/Health Educators have enrolled in Kabul University's Medical School and have been exempted from numerous classes because of the quality of training that they received at AIL. To date, 52 women have graduated from this course and are providing urgently needed health care services to thousands of Afghan women who would not otherwise have access to care. Nineteen more women are currently enrolled.

The College of Math and Computer Science course subjects include Computer, Math, Dari, Psychology, English, and Islamiat. Currently 113 students are studying in this 4-year program. Students are broadening their knowledge base and learning leadership skills that will prepare them for management positions in public and private sector organizations. Skilled managers and leaders who are able to develop innovative solutions to the many problems of Afghanistan are greatly needed during this period of reconstruction.

In the College of Education, teachers study to be teacher trainers. They learn student-centered, interactive methods of teaching and how to train other teachers to use these methods. These interactive teaching methods are revolutionizing education in Afghanistan and starkly contrast with traditional Afghan teaching methods which rely on recitation and rote memorization. Interactive methods like demonstration, practical application, discussion, and group work challenge students and teach them to think critically and to problem solve. Those studying to be Master Teacher Trainers are required to complete practical and theoretical work. They are taught by AIL’s Master Teacher Trainers and receive individual training and guidance. Last year, two teachers completed this course of study and became Master Teacher Trainers. Thirteen teacher trainers are currently enrolled in this program. In total, AIL teacher trainers and Master Teacher Trainers have trained over 8,000 Afghan teachers in interactive methods, increasing the quality of education for hundreds of thousands of students.

During the winter of 2004, another Afghan woman who had also founded a university asked to merge her university with Gawhar Shad in order to improve the quality and sustainability of her post-secondary program. AIL agreed to this merger and welcomed the new students. CHI and AIL are also looking forward to expanding these post-secondary course offerings to students in Afghanistan as soon as possible.

Share on Twitter Share on Facebook

About Project Reports

Project Reports on GlobalGiving are posted directly to by Project Leaders as they are completed, generally every 3-4 months. To protect the integrity of these documents, GlobalGiving does not alter them; therefore you may find some language or formatting issues.

If you donate to this project or have donated to this project, you will get an e-mail when this project posts a report. You can also subscribe for reports via e-mail without donating.

Get Reports via Email

We'll only email you new reports and updates about this project.

Organization Information

Creating Hope International (CHI)

Location: Dearborn, Michigan - USA
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @sakenafund

Funded Project!

Thanks to 9 donors like you, a total of $1,978 was raised for this project on GlobalGiving. Combined with other sources of funding, this project raised enough money to fund the outlined activities and is no longer accepting donations.

Still want to help?

Support another project run by Creating Hope International (CHI) that needs your help, such as:

Find a Project

Learn more about GlobalGiving

Teenage Science Students
Vetting +
Due Diligence


Woman Holding a Gift Card
Gift Cards

Young Girl with a Bicycle

Sign up for the GlobalGiving Newsletter

WARNING: Javascript is currently disabled or is not available in your browser. GlobalGiving makes extensive use of Javascript and will not function properly with Javascript disabled. Please enable Javascript and refresh this page.