USAID's Higher Education System Strengthening Activity

Focus Areas

Home Student Success

Improving graduate employability through


Ultimately, the HESSA project aims to open doors to meaningful, well-matched student careers. HESSA seeks to enable and empower students to access and succeed in higher education--especially women and marginalized students--by building co-curricular programs that elevate student "power skills" and global competencies, creating strong student support networks that set them up for post-graduation success.

To that end, we will support Pakistan’s higher education institutions in achieving the following:

  • Enhance financial aid systems at institutions.
  • Improve skills and pathways to connect graduates to market-led, demand-driven employment and alumni engagement.
  • Develop and implement a comprehensive entrepreneurship training, coaching, and mentoring program to support students.
  • Engage alumni as critical stakeholders in the relationship between universities and industry. Alumni can both mentor students and help create talent pipelines for employers.

The HESSA team will also work with education leaders to enhance or offer new student life offerings to improve success and retention. Together, we will:

  • Offer leadership training that is interactive, practical, and involves a service-learning component.
  • Create comprehensive learning communities that make curriculum more coherent, cohesive, synergistic, and relevant to students interests and aspirations.
  • Work with partner institutions to develop programs and services that create an inclusive and engaged on-campus community.


This program is made possible by the support of the United States Government and the American people through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). The contents are the sole responsibility of the University of Utah and do not necessarily reflect the views of USAID or the U.S. Government.