From the President’s DeskMore in this issue
What draws people to Lebanon?
What is it that leads millions of people across the world to come and visit our little country? What is it that causes our emigrants to flock home in multitudes every summer? Why are we consistently viewed as a shimmering gem in a turbulent region?
In short, what is it that sets Lebanon apart? Is it our country’s famous natural beauty? Is it our lively culture, our incredible history, our joie de vivre? It is all of these, of course – and more – that make Lebanon so unique. And that is what LAU strives to embody and honor every day.
In this issue of LAU Magazine and Alumni Bulletin we explore living in Lebanon and what makes it so exceptional, so endearing and so exciting that people choose to come and stay, in spite of the challenges we often endure.
From our majestic historical buildings to our lively arts scene, from our proud food culture to our bounty of educated and sophisticated professionals, Lebanon offers residents and visitors alike a chance to experience the crossroads of continents with a distinctive twist.
We here at LAU have always tried to do service to our great country by fulfilling our role as a leading institution. We aim to represent Lebanon’s many cultures and histories, to welcome learners from all backgrounds and to produce cutting-edge research that helps shape scholarship across the world.
Through partnerships with governmental organizations, the private sector, leading institutions and international bodies, we expand our reach and solidify our standing. We publish in flagship journals and lead innovations across numerous fields. We are one of the first to embrace new techniques and systems. We blaze trails academically and socially. And we leave nobody out. Indeed, we canvass the globe to recruit the best faculty, we help deserving students and those in need of financial assistance, and we do our best to serve our community. After all, it is our faculty, students and communities that help us shine as a beacon of progress and stability in our proud nation.
In the past few months, LAU has signed several memoranda of understanding with the Lebanese Security Forces to give personnel access to educational materials that will help them excel personally and professionally. We have worked with non-governmental agencies such as the Red Cross to increase efficiency and thus save lives. We have held charity events, organized fundraisers and conducted community outreach to give back. Our alumni continue to make strides in their fields both here and abroad. And throughout it all, we are forever raising the bar on academic performance and output.
In this issue, we explore why LAU is such an important presence in Lebanon, how we uphold the community and respect the country we call home. In line with our move to involve students in the production of our communications, this issue includes an editorial and an op-ed written by Communication Arts students, expressing their views of the country, what makes it special, and LAU’s place in it. We also benefited from student talent with our guest poem and the cover image used for this edition of the magazine, the result of outreach from our editorial team to find fresh outlooks from our campus.
So read on to learn more about the ways that we at LAU work together to ensure our university best represents the energy, dynamism and passion of our country.
Joseph G. Jabbra