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An Attempt To Resurrect Engineering Education In Herat, Afghanistan

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2002 Annual Conference


Montreal, Canada

Publication Date

June 16, 2002

Start Date

June 16, 2002

End Date

June 19, 2002



Conference Session

International Engineering Education

Page Count


Page Numbers

7.165.1 - 7.165.17



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Paper Authors

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Bahadur Khan Khpolwak

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Mohammad Saleh Keshawarz

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Session 2160

An Attempt to Resurrect Engineering Education in Herat, Afghanistan

M. Saleh Keshawarz, Bahadur Khan Khpolwak

Associate Professor and Chairman of Civil and Environmental Engineering University of Hartford, West Hartford, CT 06117, USA/Dean, Faculty of Engineering, Herat University, Herat, Afghanistan


Formal Engineering Education goes back to 1956 when engineering courses were offered as part of the Faculty of Science. However, it was not until 1996, when Engineering College started its operation as an independent college. The new college was built through the joint efforts of the Royal Government of Afghanistan and the United States Government. United States Agency for Development provided the funds for the infrastructure and faculty development.

During the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan in the early parts of 1980’s, the college was stamped as an American institution and was targeted for elimination and was finally was shut down in 1984. By that time, a large number of the professors had migrated to foreign countries.

In 1984, a small group of these professors through funds provided by USAID, established a construction-related program in Peshawar, Pakistan, which lasted until USAID funds dried up in 1994.

Coordination of Humanitarian Assistance, CHA an Afghan non-governmental organization (NGO), with assistance provided by the then Governor of Herat, Ismael Khan, managed to rescue the program and transfer it to Herat, on the western side of Afghanistan. At the beginning the college was admitting both male and female, however, with the coming of Taliban to power, admission of female was suspended.

The college uses the same curriculum that was in place in Kabul University during 70’s. This paper reviews the efforts to resurrect the college and provides recommendation to modernize its curriculum as it relates to present Afghan situation. This is especially important in view of the fact that there is a sever shortage of literature on the subject.

Proceedings of the 2002 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2002, American Society for Engineering Education

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Khpolwak, B. K., & Keshawarz, M. S. (2002, June), An Attempt To Resurrect Engineering Education In Herat, Afghanistan Paper presented at 2002 Annual Conference, Montreal, Canada. 10.18260/1-2--10068

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