Since its establishment over four decades ago, our office has been a salient pioneer in promoting AUB's visibility as a world-class provider for academic consulting. We embarked on a realm of opportunities no other similar institution in the region had embarked on: establishing new schools, restructuring higher education institutions, upgrading academic and administrative units, supporting institutional accreditation, and offering accredited capacity-building programs, among other services we have been providing.
Today, despite the changing dynamics in the region, our attention remains focused on envisioning and identifying new opportunities for growth. To augment our impact in making a difference, we partnered with several world-renowned entities on global development projects as well as regional and local collaborations. Some of these entities included international and regional organizations such as the Union of Arab Banks, as well as local government agencies, to list few. Not only have we buoyantly extended our outreach through such collaborations, but also boosted our portfolio of services and impactful projects.
One of our recent local impacts was in partnership with the British Council through our provision of technical assistance for governmental capacity building and youth empowerment. Implemented through the Ministry of Youth and Sports (MoY&S), in collaboration with the Center for Public Health Practice (CPHP) at AUB, we provided strategic review of the organizational and operational capacity and understanding of youth within the ministry; developed its operational, administrative, and legal capacities; as well as improved the ministry's information and knowledge management mechanisms. Throughout this unique project, the highlight was a three-day training conducted for sports trainers from across Lebanon on combating violence through sports.
Another impactful project was in collaboration with World Learning organization, which has awarded AUB a three-year contract to run the US State Department's flagship US-Middle East Partnership Initiative (MEPI) program to train civil society and democracy advocates from across the MENA region. This program empowers upcoming leaders in the Arab world where each year a cohort of 19-24 fellows participate in a four-week academic program, which takes place at AUB and consists of rich components on civic engagement. After completion of the academic component, all fellows were matched with different organizations, depending on their experience and interests, where they complete their practicum. Each cohort concludes with a closing ceremony where all fellows present their civic action plan, which is comprised of either a new initiative or managing existing civic engagement activities for implementation in their home countries.
Our services have uniquely resonated across Africa as well. In cooperation with the Chemistry and IT department, we successfully conducted a series of three organic chemistry competitions at the Ahfad University for Women (AUW) in Sudan. The first competition was at the level of the university itself, the second was at the level of universities of Sudan, while the third competition was at the level of universities in Africa. The outcome was breathtaking: a significant increase in student academic performance in organic chemistry, let alone the stupendous excitement at the event itself! Transformative education was indeed being put into action at AUW in Sudan not to mention the immense visibility for AUB.