KARACHI - The Marketing Association of Pakistan (MAP) and Institute of Business Management (IoBM) had joined hands and announced the launch of an MBA degree in Advertising and Communication management in 2008. Advertising and Communication Management is a sector of the industry that is thriving in Pakistan and there is a clear need to produce specialists in the field keeping in mind its immense potential. The graduating ceremony of the first batch was held at a local hotel today. A total of 20 students had enrolled in the first batch out of which 12 have graduated and the remaining will do so by the next semester. The evening was well attended by eminent professionals from the advertising and media world, heads of multi national and large local companies as well as the students and faculty of IoBM. The idea behind this get together was to get the decision makers in the field of Marketing and advertising to interact with the students. The success of the MBA program can be measured from the fact that most of the students have already started their professional careers with top multinational and local companies prior to completion of the Degree. Addressing the gathering, President, Marketing Association of Pakistan (MAP) Farukh Mazhar said the MAP which was founded in the year 1967 as a platform for professional marketers, has made significant contributions towards promoting the understanding of the Marketing discipline, encouraging new entrants in the field, and also has constantly supported those who either sought or found their careers in Marketing. Keeping this is view MAP decided to approach IOBM and expressed our concern over the lack of advertising professionals and suggested a charter the objectives of which include looking for ways and finding means to improve and develop the technical and general knowledge of persons engaged or about to be engaged in the profession of Marketing. The programme is committed to promote the study of all such branches of knowledge relevant to the profession of Marketing. With these clear goals at the forefront, the MAP Council in 2005 joined hands with the Institute of Business Management to evaluate, design and offer for study, an advanced level MBA Advertising curriculum. The efforts of MAP and the keen support of the Institute of Business Management, is turning out to be successful as I see before me all these proud graduates who have excelled in the field of Advertising and communication. The sapling that was planted 3 years ago has now produced the first fruits of Endeavour I on behalf of MAP would like to extend special recognition to the management at IOBM for their kind support in furthering the cause of MAP by producing highly skilled professionals, well versed in the art of advertising and communication. Director Admin IoBM Ms. Sabeena Mohsin said: "It's a matter of great pride for us that two institutions like IoBM and MAP had joined forces to bring to you a wonderful degree program. The objective of the program was to highlight the fact that Advertising and Communications is growing field. It was the first of its kind program and the students sitting in front of me are the first of the hundreds that we know will benefit from this program. We look forward to partnering with MAP on many new ventures in the future."