The below eight University of Central Asia (UCA) TKN volunteers were invited to attend the UCA Convocation held in June 2023, in recognition of their exemplary voluntary service to UCA. Among the distinguished guests were UCA trustees, including Princess Zahra Aga Khan. These TKN volunteers had the unique opportunity to be introduced to Princess Zahra at a special event - see above photograph of the TKN volunteers pictured with Princess Zahra. Photos and brief summaries of the volunteers’ exceptional TKN contributions to UCA are provided below.

Sadru Damji - Senior Education Consultant, Toronto, Canada.
TKN Assignment Titles: Consultant, Academic Planning & Admission Requirements; Consultant, Preparatory Science Design.

  • In 2012, conducted detailed Baseline Assessment Study of eight top schools in Central Asia to identify gaps in students’ knowledge and skills and recommended a full-year Preparatory Program. This enabled students from varied academic backgrounds to overcome academic shortfalls and prepare them for UCA’s challenging curriculum.
  • In 2015, interviewed and recommended science faculty for start of UCA academic year. Conducted focus groups for SPCE (School of Professional Continuing Education) in Naryn, Dushanbe and Khorog and interviewed candidates for SPCE program. Recommended intensive English and Math language training to address specific gaps and the integration of technology and study skills into all elements of the UCA program and interviewed TKN volunteers for the positions.
  • Developed a design brief for a wet and dry laboratory and Preparation room, made recommendations for equipment and materials and interviewed science faculty for Preparatory Program.

Naseem Jaffer - Education Consultant, San Francisco, USA.
TKN Assignment Title: Math Curriculum Development Specialist.

  • Has been serving UCA for the past 8 years. Has helped with Curriculum Development for summer camps, and training teachers and staff on content development for Math Modules.
  • Has supported UCA both remotely and onsite; has visited the campus several times to deliver in-person training and staff development sessions, and provide guidance for academic courses.

Dr Shireen Hirani - Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan.
TKN Assignment Title: Management Consultant - since 2021.

  • Conducted gap analyses and needs assessments in various departments to build capacity by utilizing TKN experts.
  • She also designed and implemented programs for the Co-Op department, with the support of TKN professionals, to provide students with Executive Mentorship and enhance Professional Development of the students and staff.

Bashir Hasham - IT Security Consultant, Toronto, Canada.
TKN Assignment Title: IT Compliance Consultant since February 2019.

  • Developed, administered, and monitored the Information Security, and IT/IS Compliance Management Program at UCA.
  • Provided support for the development, implementation and revision of IT policies for Information Security and Quality Assurance for the IT/IS Compliance Program and its related activities.
  • Bashir and Jalal Moloo, the other TKN IT Compliance Consultant, have helped train over 300 UCA staff members on IT security.
  • Train and coach resident staff/experts in achieving self-sufficiency to sustain overall IT/IS compliance and governance.

Jalal Moloo - Cyber Security & IT Risk Expert, London, England.
TKN Assignment Title: IT Security and Compliance Consultant.

  • He has served with UCA for 4 years as an  IT Security expert.
  • Responsible for designing and executing awareness and testing programs related to phishing and IT security threats.
  • Together with Bashir Hasham, has trained over 300 UCA staff members in four countries on IT security.
  • Helped implement Blockchain based UCA degree verification technology. Only a few programmes in the world, like MIT, are currently utilizing Blockchain for this purpose.

Zul Jiwani - Owner, Geo Technology (GIS) Consulting, Toronto, Canada.
TKN Assignment title: Office 365 Consultant.

  • Zul has been contributing his expertise to UCA for over five years.
  • During the Covid pandemic, he provided valuable online training and guidance to staff and students on how to use Office 365 effectively for classes and meetings.
  • Zul continues to share his knowledge and expertise regarding Office 365 products, features, technical issue resolution, deployment/adoption processes and best practices.

Shajahan Merchant - Owner, Digital & AI company, New York, USA.
TKN Assignment Title: Event Planner.

  • He has made a significant contribution to UCA for the past 7 years in event planning, coordination, and management.
  • In 2016, his service was invaluable as the event planner for the UCA Naryn Campus Inauguration and subsequently for the UCA Khorog Campus Inauguration in 2018.
  • He also served as the Event Planner for the 2022 convocation and most recently for the 2023 convocation.

Rahim Jaffer - Senior Financial Planning Manager, San Francisco, USA.
TKN Assignment Titles: Finance Manager, Grants; Finance Consultant, School of Professional Continuing Education (SPCE).

  • One of 12 TKN consultants who supported the UCA Finance team in implementing the SAP budget and grant modules in 2021. Serving as a TKN Consultant for 3 years, he is currently helping to provide training on best practices and assisting SPCE professionals in conducting feasibility studies for new and existing projects.
  • Rahim’s TKN work has been recognized by the California Legislature Assembly for his contributions to voluntary community service.