Lebanese American University

Update: Advancement

Tomorrow’s Leaders are at LAU today

Back in 2008 the United States Department of State’s Middle East Partnership Initiative (MEPI) joined with LAU to create the Tomorrow’s Leaders Program. The program provides higher education opportunities to youth from around the Arab world who demonstrate outstanding leadership potential but who may otherwise miss out on a chance to study at an American higher education institution.
 
Some of the students from the Tomorrow’s Leaders Program at LAU
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The comprehensive program selects the best high school students with leadership capabilities from around the MENA region and offers them the opportunity to pursue undergraduate studies at LAU, AUB or the American University in Cairo. Selected students from a dozen Arab countries receive full-tuition scholarships and the majority of the program’s students are women.
 
The mission of the program is to prepare Arab leaders for the 21st century. Through high-quality academic support, leadership development activities, and civic engagement opportunities, the program fosters professionalism, ethical conduct, and tolerance to enable the students to become globally competitive leaders and change agents in their respective societies.
 
The United States government has provided nearly $7 million worth of funding for the Tomorrow’s Leaders Program at LAU, helping dozens of students to build and grow their leadership skills and their civic activism throughout the region.
 
In fact, since arriving at LAU, many of the Tomorrow’s Leaders Program students have earned recognition for their activism, helping out with various campus group events and fundraising activities. For example, early last year some of the students from the Tomorrow’s Leaders Program spearheaded a weeklong fundraising campaign to help victims of the massive earthquake that struck Haiti.

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In a speech in Washington last Spring US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (pictured, right) spoke about the importance of engaging young people in the Middle East.
 
“There was a time when those of us who championed civil society or worked with marginalized minorities or on behalf of women, or were focused on young people and technology, were told that our concerns were noble but not urgent” the Secretary of State said. “That is another false narrative that has been washed away. Because these issues – among others – are at the heart of smart power – and they have to be at the center of any discussion attempting to answer the region’s most pressing questions.”
 
There is little question that the Tomorrow’s Leaders Program at LAU has put this important message into action.

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