M.U.B.S. Participates in UN Academic Impact Meeting in New York

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MUBS Participates in UN Academic Impact Meeting in New York

In a historic event aimed at creating new partnerships between the United Nations and global institutions of higher education, UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon launched the United Nations Academic Impact (UNAI) in a large and diverse gathering of academics from around the world. The project is an initiative of the Department of Public Information aimed at engaging the academic world in recognition of the "enormous impact of scholarship, innovation and ideas to build a better world", as the secretary general stated.

M.U.B.S., recognizing its unique role in promoting a culture of intellectual and social responsibility as an institution of higher education and research, was one of few regional universities participating and - more importantly- contributing to the two-day conference where ideas were exchanged and developed as to how to put the new partnership into practice. M.U.B.S. was represented by its BOT member Dr. Nael Alami.

The inauguration ceremony took place at the UN headquarters in New York City followed by a two-day conference on 18-19 November and concluded with a concert conducted by the Asia-Pacific United Orchestra. Speaking to more than 300 representatives from academic institutions "from Botswana to Bangkok, Kyushu in Japan to KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa, from Mexico to Mongolia", the Secretary General stressed the need to "magnify the great impact the academic community is having. In addition to resources, in addition to personnel, we need ideas. Ideas bring the United Nations to life" he stressed.

In short, Academic Impact is a global initiative that aligns institutions of higher education with the United Nations in actively supporting ten universally accepted principles in the areas of human rights, literacy, sustainability and conflict resolution. The Academic Impact also asks each participating college or university to actively demonstrate support of at least one of those principles each year. Its essential frame of reference are:

  1. To bring into association with the United Nations, and with each other, institutions of higher learning throughout the world.
  2. To provide a mechanism for such institutions to commit themselves to the fundamental precepts driving the United Nations mandate, in particular the realization of the universally determined Millennium Development Goals
  3. To serve as a viable point of contact for ideas and proposals relevant to the United Nations mandate.
  4. To promote the direct engagement of institutions of higher education in programs, projects and initiatives relevant to this mandate.

Under this banner, M.U.B.S. has committed itself to developing a hub for UNAI in the region, working specifically towards "creating the opportunities for every interested individual to acquire the skills and knowledge necessary for the pursuit of higher education". The university was able to distinguish itself as a modern, ambitious research center, seeking partnerships which will hopefully come to fruition within months from now, with a number of European and American institutions showing great interest in establishing a student exchange or scholarship programs that reflect the spirit of the initiative and the growing role M.U.B.S. is playing within the international community of higher education institutes.

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