Mujtaba Hedayet

I am a Ph.D. student in the Higher Education Administration program at the University of Massachusetts Amherst (UMass). I obtained my Master of Education from UMass in 2015 and returned to Afghanistan to work for USAID’s largest higher education project in the world, the University Support and Workforce Development Program (USWDP), until I returned for my doctorate program.  


In my position as the Executive Director of Program Coordination at USWDP during 2015-2017, I was part of the leadership of the project and led the annual work plan development, facilitated the weekly leadership meetings, coordinated programs with the leadership of the Ministry of Higher Education (MoHE) and target public universities, and reported the project achievements to USAID.


Before I came to UMass for my master’s degree, I worked with USAID’s Higher Education Project (HEP) in different capacities. During my work at HEP (2009-2013), I worked closely with the leadership of the MoHE and major public universities and was involved in developing the National Higher Education Strategic Plan, the Quality Assurance and Accreditation System, the National Priority Program for higher education, the Higher Education Gender Strategy, and some other higher education policies.


Additionally, I facilitated participation of the MoHE in Human Resources Development Cluster and Human Resources Development Board. At one point I was responsible for all donor coordination at the MoHE where I worked with all the major donors and relevant ministries in Afghanistan and coordinated their projects in higher education.


For my current graduate assistantship, I work as a Scholarship and Fellowship Advisor in the Commonwealth Honors College at UMass. My scholarly interests include college access and success for minoritized and underserved populations, quality assurance in higher education, higher education and university autonomy, internationalization of higher education, and study abroad. My Ph.D. degree from UMass will open new doors and possibilities for me in my career in higher education development internationally.


As Nelson Mandela puts it, "It always seems impossible until it's done."


Entrance Year: 
5-year span: 
On-Campus Student