BAU graduated its fifth class of 332 graduates in Tripoli Branch, distributed among the Faculties of Business Administration, Architecture-Design and Built Environment, Engineering, Science and Health Sciences.

The event was attended by the President of the BAU Board of Trustees Dr. Said Jazaeri, BAU President Professor Amr Galal El Adawi, BAU Vice Presidents, Deans, Staff, and a crowd of prominent diplomatic, political, economic, municipalitys’ delegates, religious and social figures in the North as well as H.E. Minister Raya Haffar El- Hassan, Keynote Speaker of the ceremony, who was awarded an honorary doctorate in Business Administration in recognition of her outstanding efforts and achievements in the financial, developmental, administrative and national forums to fall within the framework of granting honorary doctorates to Lebanese, Arab and international figures who have had a great impact on their societies.

The event opened with the procession of graduates, deans, faculty members, faculty directors and the President, followed by the Lebanese National Anthem and the BAU Anthem. This was followed by a recitation of the Holy Quran by Sheikh Mohammad Hoblos.

Ms. Nala Makouk, opened the event, addressing the graduates, “You look up to the stars with determination and persistence in a world that faces the challenges of the technological revolution and the increasing scientific and knowledge development, armoured with education from this academic edifice which, fortified with leadership in pursuit of global recognition, spreads knowledge and education and accumulates one success after another.

The graduates’ speech was delivered by students Ghada Maasarani and Mohammad Al-Halabi from the Faculty of Architecture-Design and Built Environment, saying, “We are haunted by the warm memories and the sweet nostalgia of those precious hours we spent within this majestic academic edifice where we sought knowledge and assimilated culture with the help of our professors who held our hands through the halls of education and knowledge among brothers and sisters from all walks of life. We were addicted to education and love like a family that shares pains and hopes with a pace that never calms down or ceases diving deep in the depths.”

BAU President Professor El-Adawi assured that “having achieved the objectives of its 2020 Strategy, Beirut Arab University has started to work hard to develop a new ambitious strategy to prepare future leaders among the Lebanese and Arab students who shall participate in decision-making, bring about change and achieve renaissance as the future is waiting for educational institutions to prepare, make, and nourish leaders. Nowadays, the universities’ role is not limited to granting degrees only, but to preparing students with the knowledge, skills and tools that enable them to participate in programming the image of the modern world through the modern world tools and conscious human responsibility.”

After being awarded the honorary doctorate, H.E. Minister Raya Haffar El-Hassan delivered her speech saying, "I am pleased and honored to stand before you today on the occasion of graduating a new batch of students. I feel proud to receive an honorary doctorate in Business Administration from this prestigious and distinguished university. I thank the BAU Board of Trustees and Administration for this honour which is deeply appreciated.

This 60-year-old university, called the Arabs’ university, is not only one of Lebanon's educational edifices which contributes to our country's recognition in this region and the world as a whole. It is also a history of bright national and Arab struggle phases which contributed to the formation of the Arab consciousness and identity. Beirut Arab University is proud that what was formerly known as the "Prison of the Sand" in Beirut is now one of its faculties. As the Minister of the Interior, I hope we open schools and universities and close prisons. With education, we fight crime, terrorism, extremism and war which was Late Prime Minister Rafik Hariri’s motto who created an army of educated people. Through the balanced development which Late President Hariri raised as a slogan, and worked to achieve, we pull the rug from under the feet of terrorism which feeds on poverty and deprivation. Our celebration today in Tripoli, which witnessed a bloody incident bears many indications, the most important of which is that this beloved city graduates young people armed with education and culture, not violence and extremism.”

Hassan continued, “We know not Lebanon as it used to be without referring to its universities. These prestigious universities, including Beirut Arab University, which are educationally comparable to the most important universities in the world not only contribute to the preparation of qualified people to be creative and distinguished in their countries or wherever they are in the world, but have a key role in shaping the value system in our Lebanese society.”

“I also believe that the future of Lebanon depends on the continuation and development of these educational institutions in order to remain distinct and continue to play their role in supporting education, promoting moderation, modernity, openness and dialogue, and serve as a living example of the freedom of expression,” she added, “Therefore, from my ministerial position through which I participate in policy-making and decision-making, I have a duty and responsibility to seek the best possible conditions for these educational institutions. I believe in values and ethics, and I am keen to apply them in every position I take, in all the decisions I have made and the tasks that I perform. Today, it is essential that these values be translated into actions as compatible with the post and responsibilities one holds. That is why I call upon you today to cling to these values as you embark on a new life.

I would like to give you some pieces of advice, some of which I heard at my graduation ceremony, others I wish I could have heard at that time.

First, never cease learning. The degree you receive today is but one station in your journey of education. Education is acquired through reading, collaborating with others, working, and pursuing your graduate studies. Never fear experience as it teaches valuable lessons, whether successful or not. Keep alert to the changes taking place in our world which pace is accelerating more and more. Never be afraid to work in different fields outside the scope of your degree. Facebook’s founder studied psychology, UBER’s Engineering, Ali Baba’s English, You Tube’s History and Netflix’s Mathematics. The best CVs are formed by people who have gained a wealth of experiences.

Second, always remember that your best adviser is your heart; never hesitate to pursue your dreams or to employ your inspiration, together with your mind, in the decisions you make. There is no greater power in the world of business than the power of passion. Never be afraid of failure. Failure and hardship are an integral part of education. Always accept disappointments when you fail and learn from your failures. Always remember that there is no place to despair and surrender when the odds are not in your favour. You have graduated from a university that was destroyed during the war. The university administration mobilized its resources and rebuilt the ruined building to resume teaching normally.

My last advice is for the female graduates among you. Your presence here reflects your desire to pursue a career in line with your ambitions. Some may say, or you may say to yourselves, that it is impossible to reconcile career and family life, that you have to choose either of them, and that your career shall take over your family life. I say: The person standing in front of you today accompanied by her husband, the doctor, and three daughters, is the best proof that it is possible to balance a successful career with a strong family.

Allow me to express my thanks and gratitude to my small family: my mother, my father, my husband and my daughters who have always supported and stood by me in all the hardships and challenges I have faced in my life.”

The ceremony ended with the distribution of the certificates to the graduates.