U-M welcomes leaders from American University of Beirut to talk multi-disciplinary collaboration

The University of Michigan last month welcomed a delegation from the American University of Beirut (AUB), one of the premier academic institutions in the Middle East. Six AUB faculty and leaders, including three deans and AUB President Fadlo Khuri, MD, spent three days in Ann Arbor meeting with high-level leaders from across U-M to discuss potential collaborations and academic exchange.

AUB President Faldo Khuri (center) talks with UMMS Executive Vice Dean for Research Steven Kunkel and U-M School of Public Health Dean F. DuBois Bowman.

The visit was organized by Eva Feldman, MD, PhD, Michigan Medicine’s Russell N. DeJong Professor of Neurology.

“I could not be more excited about the relationships that were built between the University of Michigan and the American University of Beirut,” said Feldman, who is the director of the Program for Neurology Research & Discovery. “President Khuri and his staff lead a truly remarkable university and medical center, which I witnessed when I visited them last year. I know that the students, faculty and research at both universities will benefit greatly from future collaboration.”

Among the highlights from the Oct. 9-11 visit: a new memorandum of understanding formalizing collaboration between the U-M School of Public Health and AUB. Other collaborations are in the works with both the U-M Medical School and the College of Engineering.

Founded in 1866 in Lebanon’s capital city, AUB has nearly 10,000 students enrolled across about 130 undergraduate and graduate programs, all following western-style curricula and instruction models. The institution’s leaders have increasingly been seeking partnerships to help advance AUB’s academic research capacity, something much needed in the region, President Khuri explained during a special guest seminar.

“We’ve been looking for real impactful partnerships with like-minded universities that share our values and want to make a difference, and I think U-M is a perfect partner for us,” Khuri said. “We are all here today sincerely aiming to build a strong partnership and collaboration.”

Khuri and his AUB colleagues attended dozens of meetings across the University of Michigan campus, including the School of Public Health, University Hospital, Life Science Institute, Rogel Cancer Center, College of Engineering, the Medical School’s Global REACH office, Michigan Institute for Clinical & Health Research and Diabetes Research Center.

Find more details and other photos of the AUB delegation visit.