A Hong Kong-born Pakistani student is a step closer to achieving her dream of eventually becoming education minister in Pakistan and will begin her masters at the prestigious University of Oxford in Britain in September, local media reported.

Before politics, though, Bibi Tayyaba, wants to become a teacher and completed the five-year Bachelor of Education (Honours) in English Language (Secondary) program in 2017 at the Education University of Hong Kong, which had been known as the Hong Kong Institute of Education when she joined in 2012.

Tayyaba has always excelled academically, having won numerous awards and scholarships. One of the most notable was when she became the first ethnic minority student to get a scholarship from the Jockey Club to take part in the Leadership Development Program at Oxford.

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Tayyaba and her friends on a trip. Photo: Education University of Hong Kong

In March this year, the Hong Kong government honored her with a HK$40,000 Sir Edward Youde Memorial Scholarship. She was among 800 students, three adults and two apprentices to receive awards of varying amounts.

The 24-year-old told Ta Kung Pao that traditional Pakistani teachings suggested men should become farmers, while women should marry as soon as possible.

She was fortunate to have the full support of her working-class parents and, together with her own dedication in the pursuit of knowledge, she attained a tertiary education in Hong Kong.

Having undertaken volunteer teaching work in developing countries, Tayyaba, who also speaks fluent Cantonese, believed that education is the way to alleviate poverty.

She told Sky Post that her ultimate goal was to become the Education Minister of Pakistan, and to achieve better gender equality in education there.