“HIGHER EDUCATION AS IT SHOULD BE”

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  • November 06, 2018

    RHU 4th Annual Founder’s Day: A contemplation of the Founder’s generous contributions in education

    RHU 4th annual Founder’s Day event was a contemplation of “Martyr Rafik Hariri’s most remarkable contribution to Lebanon and the Lebanese, that is his philanthropic support of more than 36,000 Lebanese students in their pursuit of higher education in Lebanon and beyond, regardless of their religious and political affiliations. The event’s distinctive slogan “للعلم رفيق" carried over to Martyr Rafik Hariri’s wisdom and remarkable insight that led to the establishment of Rafik Hariri University, and which relate to his main purpose “to provide affordable higher education to the Lebanese without forsaking quality.” This has been clearly stated by RHU President, Dr. Makram Suidan, in his word on the occasion.

     

    Coinciding with Marty’s Rafik Hariri’s birth date, November 1, the event was celebrated under the patronage of Mrs. Nazik Rafik Hariri, President of RHU Board of Trustees and President of Hariri Foundation and welcomed Dr. Fouad Mrad as the event’s keynote speaker at 11:00 a.m. in the RHU MEA Conference Hall.

     

    Following the Lebanese national anthem and a moment of silence in memory of H.E. late prime minister and RHU founder Martyr Rafik Hariri, RHU Vice President for Development, Mr. Hisham Kobrosli, welcomed the exceptional assembly of dignitaries, faculty, staff and students, who graced RHU’s Founder’s Day celebration, MP Mr. Mohamad Al Hajjar, representing H.E. Saad Hariri, Mrs. Huda Tabbara representing Mrs. Nazik Rafik Hariri, MP and Head of the Committee for Education, Ms. Bahia Hariri, Minister Samir Jisr, His Excellency Ambassador of Spain to Lebanon Mr. José María Ferré de la Peña represented by Mr. Gabriel Sistiaga; Dr. Haidar Farhat, Director of UN-ESCWA; Mrs. Salwa Siniora Baasiri, Director General of Rafik Hariri Foundation, former and current ministers and members of parliament, and members of RHU Board of Trustees.

     

    In his word on the occasion, RHU President, Dr. Makram Suidan, focused on the Founder’s contributions in the academic sector. “This man, the late Rafik Hariri, was a visionary who sought beauty, order and prosperity for all Lebanese regardless of religious or political affiliation. He achieved a lot while serving as Prime Minister of Lebanon and I can only imagine how much more he would have achieved had he not been taken away from us prematurely by murderous hands. I honestly believe that were it not for him, the educational system in Lebanon would have collapsed. Perhaps one of Rafik Hariri’s most enduring legacies is the establishment on September 1, 1999, of the Hariri Canadian Academy.  This institute was later named the Rafik Hariri University, or RHU.  If I have to choose a mission that defines this University, I would say it is a Center for Affordable Excellence in Education.

     

    Mr. Kobrosli then invited all attendees to listen to a recorded broadcast of a word from Mrs. Nazik Rafik Hariri, President of RHU Board of Trustees and President of Rafik Hariri Foundation. She said: “This dear occasion reunites us again for the fourth time. We gather to commemorate the birth of Martyr Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, this precious anniversary that coincides with the Founder's Day celebrated by Rafik Hariri University. The challenges persist and we are at a very delicate internal and regional stage, and we are facing a vital national entitlement, which we are still unable to achieve, by agreeing to form a national, inclusive government that provides the Lebanese the right to a decent, peaceful and secure life. We are all invited to commit to our national responsibilities and preserve our country and unity away from the political strife that threatens the security and stability of Lebanon. This is our promise to you beloved Martyr Rafik Hariri.”

     

    Mr. Kobrosli welcomed Dr. Fouad Mrad, Program Manager at UN-ESCWA and event keynote speaker. Dr. Mrad delivered an ardent word on the occasion. "Today is a day of joy and pride, the day an iconic Lebanese and Arab leader was born. I have the honor to accept the invitation. I am just one of the tens of thousands of students who have learned and succeeded through the generous support of Rafik Hariri, the founding father who worked for his country and his people until the last moment of his life." Dr. Mrad then announced an educational day at ESCWA in cooperation with the Rafik Hariri Foundation, indicating that they will work closely with the university to examine the needs of the labor market and to introduce the appropriate competencies for the fourth industrial revolution and artificial intelligence.

     

    At the conclusion of the ceremony, Dr. Fouad Mrad, received an award from Mrs. Huda Tabbara, Mr. Mohamad Hajjar, Mrs. Bahia Hariri, Ms. Salwa Siniora Baasiri,  and Dr. Makram Suidan, in appreciation for his participation in the event.

    All were then invited to a reception outside the conference hall.

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