Category Archives: Education

ZOSTA Awards 2018-19

Merit prizes for bright students, teachers and principals – please apply / call directly to the organizers




Please read the details in the attachments carefully and apply. These announcements appeared on pages 7 and 9 of Jame Jamshed of Sunday 2nd September 2018.

PhD candidate in Iranian Studies

Faculty of Humanities, Leiden University Centre for the Study of Religion is looking for a PhD candidate in Iranian Studies/History of Religions (2 positions of 1.0 FTE).


Project description

The PhD candidate will carry out research in the framework of the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research ( funded project, Keepers of the Flame: The Reconfiguration of the Zoroastrian Priesthood in Sasanian and Early Islamic Times, led by Professor Albert de Jong. This project examines the history of the Zoroastrian priesthood in two periods of transformation: the Sasanian Empire and the early Islamic period. The project as a whole aims to answer the question how Zoroastrianism survived the loss of its empire. The project will study the build-up and transformation of the Zoroastrian priesthood in the context of innovative theorizing about longue durée history of religion, the transformation of Iranian identity, and the role of religious specialists.

The PhD candidate will join a research team that will consist of four members: two PhD candidates, one post-doctoral researcher, and the project leader. They will participate in regular team meetings and present their research findings at scholarly venues, as well as in field trips to Iran and India.

Key responsibilities

The two PhD candidates will each study a specified topic within the project focusing on a particular period:

  • The Zoroastrian Priesthood in the Sasanian Empire; this project examines the role of  Zoroastrian priests in the Sasanian Empire (224-651 ce). The candidate will bring together the relevant sources (epigraphic, material, literary), and analyse them in light of recent developments in Sasanian history and in the study of religion. By asking the central question how the priestly hierarchy and priestly duties were interconnected with the Sasanian imperial strategy, this project will lead to a reassessment of the role of priests in the empire, and of the role of the Sasanian empire in the development of Zoroastrianism;
  • The Zoroastrian Priesthood in Early Islamic Iran (651-1078 ce); this project will ask the question what happened to the Zoroastrian priesthood when the Sasanian empire was destroyed. The candidate will bring together and analyse the relevant sources (in Middle Persian and Arabic) in light of current insights in early Islamic and Iranian history and in the study of religion. A particular focus of the project will be the transformation in the self-understanding of Zoroastrianism and its connections with Iranian identity.

Selection criteria

  • An MA degree in Iranian or Middle Eastern Studies, or in the Study of Religion. Candidates near completion of the degree will be considered;
  • Demonstrable interest in theorizing pre-modern religions;
  • Fluency in English;
  • Willingness to work in an international and competitive research environment;
  • Ability to work independently and as part of and in support of a larger team;
  • For project 1 The Zoroastrian Priesthood in Early Islamic Iran (651-1078 ce) excellent command of Middle Persian, thorough knowledge of the religious history of ancient Iran and a keen interest in theorizing pre-modern religious and cultural history; excellent command of the source material in the relevant languages; knowledge of Persian is highly desirable; knowledge of Syriac and Arabic will be considered a great asset; experience in working with disparate source materials (both textual and material); knowledge of Sasanian history and the history of Iranian religion;
  • For project 2 The Zoroastrian Priesthood in Early Islamic Iran (651-1078 ce) excellent command of Middle Persian and Arabic thorough knowledge of the religious history of early Islamic Iran and a keen interest in theorizing pre-modern cultural and religious history; excellent command of the source material in the relevant languages; knowledge of Persian is highly desirable; knowledge of the early medieval history of Iran and the Muslim world.

Our Faculty/ Institute

The Faculty of Humanities is rich in expertise in fields such as philosophy, religious studies, history, art history, literature, linguistics and area studies covering nearly every region of the world. With its staff of 995, the faculty provides 27 master’s and 25 bachelor’s programmes for over 7,000 students based at locations in Leiden’s city centre and in buildings in The Hague.

The PhD students will hold a position in the Leiden University Centre for the Study of Religion (LUCSoR). LUCSoR brings together expertise in specific religions with a comparative approach that draws on a variety of humanistic and social scientific disciplines. In an open discussion and with a fresh pair of eyes LUCSoR strives to understand religion in a changing world. LUCSoR works closely together with the Leiden University Institute for Area Studies (LIAS).

Terms and conditions

We offer a fixed-term post from 1 December 2018 until 30 November 2022. The appointment will initially be for 12 months and if evaluated positively, with an extension of 3 years and must lead to the completion of a PhD thesis. The salary range for a PhD student is from €2,266- to €2,897 gross per month (pay-scale P) based on a full-time appointment.

Leiden University offers an attractive benefits package with additional holiday (8%) and end-of-year bonuses (8.3 %), training and career development and sabbatical leave. Our individual choices model gives you some freedom to assemble your own set of terms and conditions. For international spouses we have set up a dual career programme. Candidates from outside the Netherlands may be eligible for a substantial tax break.


Leiden University is strongly committed to diversity within its community and especially welcomes applications from members of underrepresented groups.


Enquiries can be made to Professor Albert de Jong.
See also “Further information”.


Applications should be in English, and be submitted by email, with the items listed below included in this order in one single PDF document named ‘FAMILY NAME – Given name – 18-xxx’:

  • A CV including education and employment history and publications;
  • A letter of motivation;
  • A 3-page research proposal, elaborating one of the two research topics specified above, in relation to the overarching theme of the project. The research proposal should be accompanied by an annotated sample bibliography of no more than two pages;
  • A writing sample in English of 10-20 pages (e.g. (part of) MA thesis);
  • Names, positions and email addresses of two referees (no reference letters).

Interviews, including short research presentations, are planned for the end of September 2018.

Apply –

‘ECSS’- Educational Crisis Scholarship Support

HDFC Bank believes that the benefits of economic growth need to flow to all sections of society. Although not a panacea, education would be one of the main interventions that would lead to the overall economic and social development of the society. With the aim of empowering individuals who are economically and socially disadvantaged, the bank has initiated various projects in the field of education and livelihood training. ‘Educational Crisis Scholarship Support‘ (ECSS) programme is envisaged to provide interim support for children facing a personal/economic exigency.
Economic hardship or a crisis in the family sometimes has a direct impact on the education of children, often resulting in the child dropping out of school/college/university. ECSS has been conceptualized to provide assistance to these students, to tide over a difficult situation/Personal/Family Crisis without adverse impact on their education.

ECSS aims to cover students from recognized Private or Government aided schools between standards 6 and 12 and students studying in undergraduate and post-graduate courses (full-time/part-time degree/diploma/ courses) who due to personal/family crises are unable to continue bearing the cost of education and are at risk of dropping out of school/college/university. This situation would be defined as bereavement/death/ terminal illness/permanent disability and loss of job of the breadwinner due to accident or any such extreme circumstances that have put a strain on the family resources. The Scholarship will cover the total annual School Fee upto a maximum of Rs.10,000/- and College/University Fee upto a maximum of Rs.25,000/- of the selected candidates.

To apply for ECSS, click here 


Annexure I (A) 
Annexure 1 (B) 
Annexure II

Scholarships for Minority Students : 70 lakh applications

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday decided to continue of pre-matric, post-matric and merit-cum-means based scholarship schemes for the students belonging to the six notified minority communities, Muslim, Christian, Sikh, Buddhist, Jain and Parsi, who are from the economically weaker sections of the society.

Under this scheme around 70 lakh fresh scholarships at a cost of Rs 5338.32 crore are likely to be disbursed in 2019-20, an official release said.

“These Schemes shall be implemented through the National Scholarship Portal (NSP) ( and scholarships are disbursed through Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) mode”, the release added.

The scholarship is awarded to students, studying in Government Schools/ Institutes or recognised private schools/ institutes and who have secured not less than 50 percent marks in the previous final examination.

“In addition to the fresh scholarships, renewal of earlier scholarships is for students who have been awarded scholarships in the previous years and fulfill the eligibility criteria”, the release said.

Under pre-matric scholarship, a scheme introduced to encourage parents from minority communities to send their school going children, studying in class 1 to 10, students, whose parents earn less than one laksh annually, will be eligible to this scholarship.

In the year 2019-20, the Union government is targeting 30,00,000 fresh applications under this scheme.

For students, hosteller and day scholars, studying from class six to 10 will get Rs. 500 per annum as admission fees.

Likewise, these students are eligible to get Rs. 4200 yearly as tuition fees.

Students studying in class 1 to 5 will get Rs. 1000 per annum as maintenance allowance and students in class 6 to 10 (hostellers) will get Rs. 6000 and day scholar will get Rs. 1000 per annum.

Under post-matric scholarship scheme, students are eligible to get this benefit whose parents/guardians income should not be more than Rs. two lakh.

In the 2019-20 government is targeting 5 lakh fresh applications under this category.

Both hostellers and day scholars studying in classes 11 and 12 will get Rs 7000 per annum as admission and tuition fees.

For technical and vocational courses of 11 and 12, students will get Rs. 1000 as admission and course/tuition fees.

Students who are doing undergraduate, post graduate, Mphil and PhD will get Rs 3000 per annum as admission and tuition fees.

Students, who are studying in class 11 and 12 including technical and vocation courses at undergraduate and post graduate level, will get Rs.3800 per annum. Students other than doing technical and professional courses at this level will get Rs 5700 per annum.

MPhil, PhD students, who are hostellers will get Rs 12000 and day scholars will get 5500 per annum.

The merit-cum-means scheme, will provide financial assistance to poor and meritorious minority students to pursue professional and technical courses at under graduate and post graduate levels.

This scheme aims students, whose parents’ annual income should not exceed 2.50 laksh and government is targeting to give 60,000 fresh applications in 2019-20.

Under the scheme, full course fees will be reimbursed to the students from 85 institutes listed under the scheme; and for others at Rs. 20,000/- per annum.

Hostellers will get Rs 10,000 and day scholars will get Rs 5000 as maintenance allowance per annum, the release said.


The Women Graduates Union in Mumbai is a part of the International Federation of Graduate Women.

We have the Mumbai Chapter here in Mumbai, of which I am the Vice President.

One of our Projects is to encourage women to educate themselves and thus, empower them.

To this end, we have been awarding scholarships every year, to women studying in all disciplines.

The criteria is financial need and merit.

I have attached below the information regarding this, and request you all to forward this to others, so that maximum number of women can take the benefit of these scholarships.

Thanks and regards,

Dr. Arnavaz M. Havewala

M.D.S. (Bombay)

Fali Chothia Scholarships

The Fali Chothia Charitable Trust is now accepting applications for its 28th annual scholarship awards. Scholarships are open to Zoroastrian students in North America enrolled in four-year or graduate-level programs. Awards are based on financial need, academic achievement, extracurricular activity and community service. They are given as outright gifts or no- and low-interest loans.
The Fali Chothia Charitable Trust was established in 1988 under the Zoroastrian Association of Metropolitan Washington, Inc. (ZAMWI). The Trust provides scholarships to deserving Zoroastrian students enrolled in universities in North America, regardless of their country of origin. Applications may be downloaded from:

ZFN Webinar 2 – Financing for Higher Education for Indian Students – 24 June – 9am IST

Thanks to all those who participated in the above Webinar. Special thanks to

  1. Farrokh Mistree, L.A. Comp Chair, Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering, University of Oklahoma, Norman, Oklahoma, USA,
  2. Farrokh Rustomjee, Chief Executive, R. D. Sethna Scholarship Fund, Esplanade House, 29, Hazarimal Somani Marg, Fort, Mumbai-400001, Tel: 022-22077044; Email: Website:
  3. Neville Shroff, The Incorporated Zoroastrian Charity Funds of Hongkong, Canton and Macao,
  4. T J Ravishankar, J. N. Tata Endowment, Mulla House, 4thfloor, 51, Mahatma Gandhi Road, Fort, Mumbai-400001.
  5. M George – Vice President, Paras Education Foundation, 4th floor, Khetan Bhavan, J. Tata Road, Churchgate, Mumbai-400020, Web:  Tel: 022-22831637, Email:  Mobile: 9830043381

who lucidly explained the details. All participants greatly benefited and expressed satisfaction at the takeaways from the session.

At the peak, we had 33 participants and the presentations were smooth and ran without a glitch.

For the benefit of all, here is the recording of the session :

And here is Farrokh Mistree’s presentation – ZFN_FinanceWebinar_062318

Financing for Higher Education for Indian Students

14th June, 2018
Zoroastrian Faculty Network
(A joint initiative of WZCC & GWG)
Financing for Higher Education for Indian Students
A Webinar on “Financing for Higher Education for Indian Students” (Restricted to first 20 registrants) brought to you by the Zoroastrian Faculty Network (ZFN)

To guide students from India on the financing options available for higher education abroad and how to avail of them.

Speakers :
Farrokh Mistree, L. A. Comp Professor University of Oklahoma, Norman, Oklahoma, will explain the objectives of ZFN guiding students interested in pursuing post graduate education abroad.

Farrokh Rustomji, R. D. Sethna Scholarship Fund

Neville Shroff, Zoroastrian Charity Funds of Hongkong, Canton and Macao

T. J. Ravishankar, Tata Trusts

M. George, Paras Educational Foundation.

  • Each speaker to give actionable guidelines for students to take advantage of the resources at their disposal
  • 30 Minutes of uninterrupted presentation followed by Q&A

WhenSunday 24th June, 2018 at Indian Standard Time 9:00 am-10:00 am

Where: Your computer, laptop, tablet or web enabled mobile phone.

HowConnect to from your browser at the appointed date and time. If connecting from your web enabled phone, download the Zoom App and connect to meeting no. 8487251418

Registration requests and technical queries to be sent to (+91-98922-19340)

Please spread the word to friends and family of those interested.

Register early to avoid disappointment.

Yazdi Tantra
 – WZCC Global Vice President“Entrepreneurship is the pursuit of opportunity beyond the resources currently controlled.”

Please consider becoming a member by visiting or contacting your Region Director/Chapter Chair.

Do You Know-What You Know? Khurshed Batliwala

Mr. Khurshed Batliwala emphasized on education as a means of knowledge and not employment. He also talked about doing things differently and having faith in our decisions even if they go against the flow. “Twenty five years ago no one had heard of Sri Sri Ravi Shankar. The whole world stood on the other side and said you are mad. I said yes, but I am happy. Be happy don’t compromise on that. You have dreams, you have visions, you have hopes don’t let people around you kill that for you. And that’s an idea worth spreading” With a postgraduate degree in Mathematics from I.I.T., Bombay, Khurshed Batliwala is a senior faculty at the Art of Living. Mr. Batliwala is a firm believer in the power of self-identified aspirations and this led him to follow an unconventional and challenging career path. He has been instrumental in designing the Youth Empowerment Seminar (YES!+) series that inspires the youth to break free from the shackles of society expectations and follow their dreams courageously. With this course he aims to propagate the vision of the Art of Living, which is to see a smile on every face on the planet. A blend of intellect and innocence, mind-blowing wit yet unconditional warmth, he continues to be a favourite among youth, and is committed to utilizing every moment of his time in enriching the lives of people around. This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community.

Applying to Graduate School in the US

17th April, 2018
A Webinar
Applying to Graduate School in the US
Sponsored By
Zoroastrian Faculty Network (ZFN)
A GWG/WZCC Joint Initiative

On May 5, 2018, 9:00AM India Time

Farrokh Mistree, Ph.D.

L.A. Comp Chair and Professor,
School of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering,
University of Oklahoma.

Janet K. Allen, Ph.D.
John and Mary Moore Chair and Professor,
School of Industrial Engineering,
University of Oklahoma.
Content of the webinar is
“Key elements of securing admission and funding at graduate schools in the US”Click here to Register
Please note:

  • Parents are encouraged to participate.
  • Information on how to participate and access to the slides will be sent after registration.

Edul Daver
 – WZCC Global President
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