AUIS | The American University of Iraq Sulaimani

AUIS

Yezidi Religious Heritage in Iraq: Transformation and Threat

Eszter Spat will be speak at a symposium at AUIS on Yezidi Religious Heritage in Iraq: Transformation and Threat. The presentation examines the recent transformation of Yezidi religious heritage, with special attention on the impact of recent political events. Yezidi religious and ritual life has been undergoing a serious transformation due to the emergence of literacy and changing socio-economic circumstances in the past few decades. The 2014 August attack on Sinjar and the subsequent mass-displacement of Sinjari Yezidis in the Kurdistan Region has wrought further changes. The dispersal of formerly close-knit communities, out-migration and loss of sacred sites poses a threat to traditional religio-ritual life. At the same time, the presence of Sinjari IDPs in the Yezidi settlements of the Kurdistan Region may give rise to new religious dynamics through access to local practices and even lead to the emergence of “hybrid” religious observances.

AUIS Professor Wins PEN Translates Award

November 23, 2017 (Sulaimani, KRG-Iraq):  Dr. Choman Hardi, a celebrated poet and Assistant Professor at the American University of Iraq, Sulaimani (AUIS), won a 2017 PEN Translates Award for translating Butterfly Valley, a book length poem by the renowned Kurdish poet, Sherko Bekas. Butterfly Valley is a lament which was written in the aftermath of the gassing of Halabja and the Anfal genocide. Supported by Arts Council England and launched in 2012, PEN Translates encourages UK publishers to accumulate books from other languages. It is part of English PEN, the global literary network that works to defend and promote freedom of expression, and to remove barriers to literature. Bekas was a pioneer in Kurdish poetry and his poems are widely read. His Butterfly Valley was written in the wake of the 1988 Anfal genocide and Halabja atrocity when Saddam Hussein’s regime punished Kurdish civilians for their support of the liberation movement. During Anfal dozens of locations were attacked with chemical weapons, 2000 villages were destroyed, and more than 100,000 civilians were exterminated. In the same year, Halabja was gassed by the former Iraqi state and 5000 people were murdered. Both the Anfal and Halabja tragedies are central to Bekas’s book. Dr. Hardi, who teaches English literature at AUIS, reflects on Bekas’s poems and explains that his complex poetic language combined with various references to historical Kurdish events, personalities, and geographic locations makes understanding his poetry difficult for non-Kurds. “This translation has been a lengthy and complicated process but despite the difficulties I have tremendously enjoyed working on Butterfly Valley,” she says. “Sherko Bekas has a few book length poems but this one remains my favorite.” She remembers that when she first heard of a tape recording of this poem in 1991 she fell in love with it and memorised parts of it. “This book evokes exile, flight, political persecution, and Kurdish history better than any other book I know.” The book will be published by a UK-based independent publishing house, Arc Publication, on March 16, 2018. The date will mark the 30th anniversary of the chemical attack on the city of Halabja. Choman Hardi is an Assistant Professor at AUIS. She returned to Kurdistan to teach after 26 years of living abroad. Her research and teaching interests include poetry, feminist literature, feminist literary criticism, gender and migration, gender and genocide, and women’s activism. Her poetry has appeared in The Poetry Review, Ploughshares, Washington Square Review, and Modern Poetry in Translation. Her English collections have been published by Bloodaxe Books. Four poems from her first collection, Life For Us, were selected onto the English GCSE syllabus in the UK in 2010 and Her second collection, Considering The Women, was shortlisted for the prestigious Forward Prize. In 2015 Dr. Hardi founded The Center for Gender and Development Studies (CGDS) at AUIS. Currently, she is working on gender and the revolution in Iraqi Kurdistan. AUIS is the first non-government, not-for-profit, American-style institution of higher education in Iraq. Celebrating its tenth anniversary this year, it is also the first non-government university in the Iraqi Kurdistan Region to be accredited by both the Federal Government of Iraq and the Kurdistan Regional Government. AUIS offers the only English as a Second Language (ESL) program in Iraq that is accredited in the United States. The University welcomes students, 35% of whom are women, from Iraq’s diverse communities, including Kurds, Arabs, Turkmen, Sunni and Shi’a Muslims, Yazidis and Christians as well as Syrian refugees. Their critical thinking skills, fluency in English, and bilingual capabilities provide AUIS graduates with excellent employment prospects in both the private and public sectors. -  ENDS  - Follow AUIS on Twitter or Facebook, or visit the University’s web site at www.auis.edu.krd, for the latest news and details about the University. If you would like to help support the University and its students, please visit the American University of Iraq Foundation's giving site or contact the office of the President, [email protected] For media requests, please contact Bzhar Boskani, media and public relations adviser, at [email protected] or 964(0)770-152-1893.

Liza O’Connor-Stroud Appointed Vice President, Advancement

Liza O’Connor-Stroud Appointed Vice President, Advancement November 13, 2017 (Sulaimani, KRG-Iraq): The American University of Iraq, Sulaimani (AUIS) announced today the appointment of Liza O'Connor-Stroud as Vice President, Advancement.The new position reflects the University’s commitment to develop sustainable new fundraising initiatives that help provide the best quality of education in the region at affordable tuition levels. As Vice President, Advancement, Ms. O’Connor-Stroud will lead initiatives to expand and strengthen the University’s network of private donors, partners, and supporters, particularly in the United States and Britain. Ms. O’Connor-Stroud has more than twenty years of experience in gift solicitation and capital campaign planning in the USA and Ireland. Prior to joining AUIS, she helped develop a $200 million fundraising campaign as Vice President of The American Ireland Fund. Commenting on the appointment, Ms. O’Connor-Stroud remarked:  "It is my privilege to play my part in ensuring the continued growth, high level of academic scholarship, and long term sustainability of this uniquely significant institution. I am honored to have the opportunity to share the University’s compelling mission with those in a position to support it." Ms. O’Connor-Stroud was director of development at the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship in Texas, and served in senior administrative positions at the Jesuit College Preparatory School Foundation in Texas and University of Limerick Foundation in Ireland. She holds a Juris Doctor degree from Georgetown University and a B.A. degree summa cum laude in philosophy from Fordham University. AUIS is the first non-government, not-for-profit, American-style institution of higher education in Iraq. Celebrating its tenth anniversary this year, it is also the first non-government university in the Iraqi Kurdistan Region to be accredited by both the Federal Government of Iraq and the Kurdistan Regional Government. AUIS offers the only English as a Second Language (ESL) program in Iraq that is accredited in the United States. The University welcomes students, 35% of whom are women, from Iraq’s diverse communities, including Kurds, Arabs, Turkmen, Sunni and Shi’a Muslims, Yazidis and Christians as well as Syrian refugees. Their critical thinking skills, fluency in English, and bilingual capabilities provide AUIS graduates with excellent employment prospects in both the private and public sectors. -  ENDS  -   Follow AUIS on Twitter or Facebook, or visit the University’s web site at www.auis.edu.krd, for the latest news and details about the University. If you would like to help support the University and its students, please visit the American University of Iraq Foundation's giving site or contact the office of the President, [email protected] For media requests, please contact Bzhar Boskani, media and public relations adviser, at [email protected] or 964(0)770-152-1893.      

AUIS Appoints New Executive Director for External Relations and Policy

Executive Director for External Relations and Policy November 12, 2017 (Sulaimani, KRG-Iraq): The American University of Iraq, Sulaimani (AUIS) announced today the appointment of Christine van den Toorn as Executive Director, External Relations and Policy. This new position reflects the University’s commitment to support current and future students by developing new and sustainable academic and research partnerships and programs, both locally and internationally. In her new position, Christine M. van den Toorn will lead efforts to build and expand the University's relationships to generate support among private sector stakeholders, governmental organizations and policymakers in the Middle East and United States. She will serve as the primary University liaison to the U.S. Government. She will continue in her role as Director, Institute of Regional and International Studies (IRIS), where she oversees the annual Sulaimani Forum, one of the premier events for Iraq and Middle East policy debates.   Ms. van den Toorn has worked at AUIS for the past eight years, first as a faculty member and then as Director of IRIS. She speaks Arabic, and has published in Foreign Policy, Carnegie’s Sada, War on the Rocks, Iraq Oil Report, Inside Iraqi Politics, Daily Beast and Niqash. Ms. van den Toorn holds an M.A. degree in History (Middle East) from the University of Virginia and  a B.A. degree in History from Washington and Lee University. Previously she served in the United States Peace Corps in Morocco.     AUIS is the first non-government, not-for-profit, American-style institution of higher education in Iraq. Celebrating its tenth anniversary this year, it is also the first non-government university in the Iraqi Kurdistan Region to be accredited by both the Federal Government of Iraq and the Kurdistan Regional Government. AUIS offers the only English as a Second Language (ESL) program in Iraq that is accredited in the United States. The University welcomes students, 35% of whom are women, from Iraq’s diverse communities, including Kurds, Arabs, Turkmen, Sunni and Shi’a Muslims, Yazidis and Christians as well as Syrian refugees. Their critical thinking skills, fluency in English, and bilingual capabilities provide AUIS graduates with excellent employment prospects in both the private and public sectors.   - ENDS  -   Follow AUIS on Twitter or Facebook, or visit the University’s web site at www.auis.edu.krd, for the latest news and details about the University. Please visit the American University of Iraq Foundation's giving site or contact the office of the President, [email protected] if  you would like to help the University and its students. For media requests, please contact Bzhar Boskani, media and public relations adviser, at [email protected] or 964(0)770-152-1893.  

AUIS Hosts Sixth Annual Career Fair

  “This was a great event because it brought together several themes of AUIS: Excellence in our students and graduates, involvement in the broader community, and service to others. We had hundreds of AUISers, both current students and alumni, pursuing employment opportunities with dozens of companies and NGOs,” said Geoffrey Gresk, dean of students, “We were also joined by guests from University of Suli and other institutions of higher education in the region. Finally, as always, we relied on a great team of student volunteers and staff members to make the day run as smoothly as it did.” The one-day event took place at the University’s conference hall, with participation of 28 companies from private and non-private sector, international development organizations, NGOs, and new startups. This event as always provides an exclusive opportunity for job seekers to engage with recruiters and have one-on-one interviews as well as a platform for recruiters to network and promote their brand. “Every year, companies from the private and non-private sector, as well as NGOs, participate at the Fair, but this year in particular, we had a number of startups that were established by our own graduates, like SAA company and MySolution, looking to hire AUIS graduates. This is something we at AUIS pride ourselves with,” said Hana Saida, AUIS communications and outreach manager and one of the organizers of the event. “Another startup, Middle East Sustainable Peace Organization MESPO -- founded by an International Studies (IS) graduate -- was looking for other IS students to provide internship opportunities.” AUIS hopes to continue hosting the annual Career Fair in the coming years. Without the support of our sponsors and exhibitors this would not be possible. Special thanks to Qaiwan Group for being our platinum sponsor for the third consecutive year, as well as our gold sponsor, The International School of Choueifat, who participated in the Fair for the first time. “We are incredibly grateful to our partners in the private, government, and non-profit sector who joined us as exhibitors for this event, as well as the hundreds of students, alumni, and outside guests who participated in this year's fair. AUIS remains committed to helping develop the private sector in Kurdistan and Iraq, through both connecting local and international firms with amazing AUIS students and alumni, as well as by helping foster new innovative startups from our student and alumni entrepreneurs. The AUIS Career Fair helps us accomplish both goals by helping us be a more effective resource for our students and a better partner for firms operating in the region,” said Oliver Keels, director of student services and one of the main organizers. Special thanks to our sponsors, without their contribution, the Career Fair would not have taken place.  

Students Awarded ICT Training Certificates by Ericsson

  The program is a two-month course which aims to build a bridge between academic institutions and the ICT industry for students who are looking into joining companies such as Ericsson. Ericsson’s ICT Professional Foundation Program targets large groups of students from across the region to help the maximum number of individuals benefit from an opportunity to seamlessly transition from academic institutions to the ICT industry. “For the second consecutive year, Ericsson has organized a certification ceremony in Sulaimani where we had the honor to celebrate twenty-two high potential students from AUIS for passing the Ericsson ICT Professional Foundation Program,” said Ibrahim Itani, Sulaimani's General Manager at Ericsson, “This program offered the participants the chance to explore valuable information on the latest Information and Communication Technologies and their impact on the business, people and society.” The program, which first started in 2015, now covers 15 countries across the Middle East and is a gateway for students in the region to explore opportunities in the ICT industry. “Ericsson remains committed to enlightening the new generation on the latest technologies and business models that will shape their future careers,” continued Itani, “We are wishing the students that have successfully passed this program all the best in their studies and future career plans.” The online nature of the course enables Ericsson to target a large group of students at once, and is efficient in terms of cost and logistics. The course supports building a great pipeline of candidates for internship and graduate programs. Ericsson is a communications technology and service company, which provides software and infrastructure – especially in mobility, broadband and the cloud – and enables the telecom industry and other sectors to do better business, increase efficiency, improve the user experience and capture new opportunities. Ericsson operates worldwide, and currently has two offices operating in the Kurdistan region. Find out more about Ericsson here.

AUIS Alumni Homecoming 2016

  The AUIS Alumni Association and the Student Services Department look forward to welcoming our alumni to the 2016 AUIS Homecoming. A "homecoming" is an American tradition in which graduated students return to their old university. We would love for you to join us! Homecoming 2016 will happen on December 10th, starting at 5:00PM, on the AUIS campus. Please join us for dinner, live music, and messages from alumni and former AUIS professors all around the world.   This event is sponsored by Byblos Bank. If you have any questions, please contact Mina Bassam, coordinator of the Student Services Department at [email protected]    

Pages

Subscribe to RSS - AUIS