Item(s) for April, 2008

Apr 22,2008

The Citizen (Dar es Salaam)
22 April 2008 | Posted to the web 22 April 2008

A student of Aga Khan Mzizima Secondary School in Dar es Salaam, Mehak Tejani, has won a scholarship worth $100,000 (about Shll5 million).

A press statement issued by the school yesterday said Tejan

has been selected from applicants worldwide to receive an International Leader of Tomorrow (ILOT) award to study at University of British Columbia (UBC). He will be completing his IB diploma next month.

The statement further said that this is a highly competitive and sought after scholarship worth $24,000 (about Sh27.6 million) annually for four years. It helps outstanding international students who would otherwise not afford University education overseas, said the statement.

It explained that the UBC ILOT award recognizes students who have achieved academic excellence and shown leadership potentials through community participation.

With a history of community service, leadership roles and an outstanding academic record Mehak was a strong candidate.

His selection for the Aga Khan Education Service, Tanzania, student of the year award, at the recently held Ismaili Students Awards ceremony is proof to this achievement, the statement said.

Responding, Mehak said: “I am really excited because I feel that this award is an opportunity for me to practice and achieve my ambitions. I am going to do my best to keep up with its name, The International Leader of Tomorrow.”


Apr 19,2008

ATLANTA — The Aga Khan, billionaire philanthropist and spiritual leader of 20 million Ismaili Muslims worldwide, ended an eight-day tour of the U.S. stressing the importance of tolerance and education.

He did so as he announced his initiative to establish schools in Africa, the Middle East and Asia.

His trip also included stops in Texas, Illinois and California.

It was part of the Shia Ismaili Muslim commemoration of the Golden Jubilee, which marks the Aga Khan’s 50th year as imam of the religious sect.

In a speech Friday at a high school in Atlanta, he sought to raise awareness about the Aga Khan Academies, a $1-billion education initiative to build 18 schools in 14 countries in Africa, Central and South Asia and the Middle East.

The project grew out of a need to develop well-educated, global citizens who would make a difference in their communities, the Aga Khan told the audience.

“Our Academies Program is rooted in the conviction that effective indigenous leadership will be the key to progress in the developing world, and as the pace of change accelerates, it is clear that the human mind and heart will be the central factors in determining social wealth,” he said.

“Too many of those who should be the leaders of tomorrow are being left behind today. And even those students who do manage to get a good education often pursue their dreams in far off places and never go home again.”

The Aga Khan, who was born and educated in Switzerland, is a Harvard-educated businessman who is a descendant of the Prophet Muhammad.

In his capacity as imam, he is also chair of the Aga Khan Development Network, a group of private, non-denominational development agencies focused on social, cultural and economic development.

The Aga Khan Academies are an initiative of the network’s Aga Khan Education Services and, under the plan, 18 schools are planned in 14 countries at a cost of about $50 million per school.

Thant’s a commitment of nearly $1 billion.

The first school opened in Mombasa, Kenya, in 2003, and others are planned in India, Bangladesh, Mozambique, Madagascar, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Syria, Tanzania and Uganda.

The academy curriculum is based on the International Baccalaureate program, which is derived from a program rooted in academics, critical thinking, and a respect and appreciation for cultural diversity.

The program is celebrating its 40th anniversary in Atlanta this week and the Aga Khan addressed the organization as its speaker for the Peterson Lecture, named for the program’s first director general.

Previously rooted in Judeo-Christian communities, the Aga Khan Academies represent the first expansion of the IB curriculum into Muslim cultures.

“Squaring the particular with the global will require great care, wisdom, and even some practical field testing, to ensure that it is really possible to develop a curriculum that responds effectively to both the global and the tribal impulses,” the Aga Khan said.

“The people with whom we will be dealing will present different challenges than before.”

To that end, there will be an emphasis on inclusion, ethics, global economics, world culture, and comparative political systems, the Aga Khan told the crowd of educators, administrators, followers and observers.

“The failure of different peoples to be able to live in peace amongst each other has been a major source of conflict,” he said.

“Pluralism is a value that must be taught … As we work together to bridge the gulf between East and West, between North and South, between developing and developed economies, between urban and rural settings, we will be redefining what it means to be well educated.”

The 70-year-old leader – also known as Prince Karim Aga Khan IV – succeeded his grandfather, Sir Sultan Mahomed Shah Aga Khan, at age 20 on July 11, 1957, becoming the community’s 49th imam.


Apr 17,2008

By CHRISTOPHER QUINN | The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Published on: 04/17/08

The Aga Khan, head of the world’s 15 million Ismaili Muslims, arrived at Fulton County Airport today to celebrate with his Georgia followers his 50th anniversary as their leader.

A band greeted him with the Ismaili anthem and the U.S. national anthem, and a representative from Gov. Sonny Perdue’s office as well as local politicians were on hand to welcome him.

Members of the Ismaili community greet the Aga Khan at the Fulton County Airport.

He will dine with Perdue and other guests at the Governor’s Mansion Friday.

The Aga Khan is well-known not only as a leader of the Ismailis, a sect of the Shiite branch of Islam, but also as a businessman and philanthropist.

He will speak in closed session with Ismailis from around the Southeast while here and give a lecture at North Atlanta High School that will attract students and teachers from around the country in the International Baccalaureate program. The Aga Khan is known for his interest in education, sponsoring 325 schools and two universities around the world.

Photos of the Event: