The AUB MEPI-TLS program aims to increase gender literacy across campus through a diverse list of course offerings. During every semester in which they are enrolled in the program, students are required to complete one of the designated MEPI-TLS gender courses and attend workshops and trainings to meet the academic requirements of the scholarship. The course portfolio is updated every semester, and includes courses from different disciplines such as humanities, social sciences, quantitative thought, and management.
The generous U.S. Department of State funding has allowed the American University of Beirut to increase significantly the capacity for gender studies on campus. Between the Spring 2020 and the Spring 2021 semesters, the number of gender studies (GS) course offerings tripled, the range of course offerings expanded considerably, student enrollment multiplied three-fold, and the demographic and academic background of students in GS courses diversified. Prior to the launch of MEPI-TLS at AUB, GS courses were underrepresented and populated with students from similar academic backgrounds. Since the introduction of MEPI-TLS in Spring 2020, the number of seats in GS courses has more than tripled from 5 courses with 108 students in Spring 2020 to 13 courses with 257 students in Fall 2020 to 15 courses with 380 students in Spring 2021.
The program's mission to increase gender literacy across campus has encouraged increased enrollment in GS, representing new and different faculties. In Fall 2020, at AUB MEPI-TLS' inaugural semester, of the 257 students enrolled in GS courses, 66% students were from FAS, and 34% were from OSB, FEA, FAFS, the School of Nursing (SON) and the Faculty of Health Sciences (FHS).
Of the 170 FAS students, 54% came from academic backgrounds not related to Humanities and Social Sciences, suggesting significantly increased participation from students in the sciences. The decision to encourage FEA student participation in MEPI-TLS beginning in Spring 2021 has led to an increasingly diverse student body in GS courses. Of 380 enrolled students in Spring 2021, 42% were from faculties other than FAS (FAFS, FEA, OSB, FHS, SON). Additionally, 60% of the 219 FAS students came from backgrounds not related to the Humanities and Social Sciences.
Finally, the induction of MEPI-TLS at AUB, has led to more diversity in gender identity among students in GS courses. Of the 108 students in Spring 2020, 23% were men, while 31% out of the 166 MEPI-TLS Fall 2020 participants were men enrolled in GS courses. In Spring 2021, the 281-student MEPI-TLS cohort consisted of 165 women, 114 men, and 2 non-binary individuals.