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The Texas International Education Consortium Partners with American University of Iraq, Sulaimani to Build Capacity for Gender Inclusive and Streamlined Degree Programs

  Media Contact: Anna Charnitski, Texas International Education Consortium [email protected],  512-600-6066   Delawit Mesfin, American University of Iraq, Sulaimani (AUIS) [email protected], +964-771-156-7123   FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE   [AUSTIN - Nov. 30, 2020] — The Texas International Education Consortium (TIEC) will partner with American University of Iraq, Sulaimani (AUIS) and the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs (NEA) to support AUIS in their mission to advance an enhanced curriculum that prioritizes the robust integration of gender and diversity, as well as developing more marketable degrees. The program contributes to a wider effort by the U.S. Government to support American-style higher education in Iraq as part of its long-term stabilization strategy. COVID-19 has made a challenging higher-education environment even more difficult. Through this program, Texas will serve as a major partner in delivering high-quality education that instills the ideals of peace and tolerance to Iraqi-youth.   TIEC has curated a team of faculty and administrators from Texas A&M University - College Station, Lamar University, Southern Methodist University, Texas State University, Texas Tech University, Texas Woman’s University, The University of Texas at Arlington, The University of Texas at Austin, The University of Texas at Dallas, Navarro College, and the University of North Texas with expertise in instructional design, curriculum development, evaluation, gender, and soft skills development to participate in this project and foster working relationships with AUIS faculty.   "TIEC hopes higher-education partnerships grow as a pillar of the U.S.-Iraq relationship. Texas has so much to share and to gain through these robust people-to-people ties," said Robin J. Lerner, TIEC president and CEO. “TIEC is proud to partner with AUIS to enhance course quality and promote a gender-inclusive and diverse curriculum within the university.”   Together, TIEC and AUIS will build a university-wide approach to support academic programs and courses that adapt and improve over time. This sustainable academic model will meet the goal of attracting a diverse student body that ultimately contributes to a global workforce that promotes tolerance, community resilience, and economic development.    Additionally, AUIS faculty will embark on a two-week Global Educational Leadership Tour in Texas to participate in a multitude of activities, including seminars, university and industry visits, and cultural excursions. The exchange will provide Iraqi faculty with experiential knowledge of American-style higher education and American culture, while strengthening relationships with U.S. faculty.   “The collaboration with TIEC provides us with an excellent opportunity to further refine our academic programs. Having access to cutting-edge expertise and innovation through TIEC’s world-renowned consortium members will support ongoing AUIS efforts to align all curricula with leading benchmarks. This does not only allow us to meet regional and international labor-market needs and global accreditation requirements, but it also ensures our students receive the very best education possible,” said Dr. Wolfgang Hinck, AUIS Vice President of Academic Affairs.   TIEC is thrilled to work with advisory board members: Dr. Meranda Roy, Online Learning Librarian, University of North Texas Dr. Jian Zhang, Associate Professor of Computer Science, Texas Woman’s University Dr. Valerie Hudson, University Distinguished Professor and George H. W. Bush Chair, Professor of International Affairs, Texas A&M - College Station Dr. Choman Hardi, Founder and Director of the Center for Gender and Development Studies, American University of Iraq, Sulaimani Dr. Krystal Hinerman, Clinical Assistant Professor of Educational Research for the Center for Doctoral Studies in the College of Education, Lamar University Dr. Linda Timmerman, Adjunct Professor of English, Navarro College   The project is funded by the U.S. State Department’s Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs.   Learn more at or contact Anna Charnitski, director of marketing and communications, Texas International Education Consortium, at [email protected], or Delawit Mesfin, director of communications, American University of Iraq, Sulaimani, at [email protected]   ###   About The Texas International Education Consortium: The Texas International Education Consortium (TIEC) is an alliance of 31 public universities in Texas that facilitates and fosters international education programs and partnerships by, with, and for its university members. Since 1985, TIEC has connected Texas education with the world. From facilitating long-term institutional partnerships to identifying new and innovative professional and educational hosting opportunities, TIEC is an invaluable resource to Texas higher education. TIEC also hosts a highly respected training institute based at its headquarters in Austin that hosts study abroad programs, professional training programs for educators from around the globe, intensive English and university pathways programs for international students, and university to university matchmaking programs between TIEC members and international counterparts.   For more information, visit    About American University of Iraq, Sulaimani: American University of Iraq, Sulaimani (AUIS) is the first non-governmental, not-for-profit, American-style university in Iraq. Founded in 2007 and operated for the public benefit, it is also the first non-governmental university in the Iraqi Kurdistan Region to be accredited by both the federal Government of Iraq and the Kurdistan Regional Government. It is the only certified member in Iraq of the Association of American International Colleges and Universities (AAICU). The University welcomes students, 35 percent of whom are women, from diverse communities throughout Iraq and the Kurdistan Region.   For more information, visit  

AUIS and the University of Arizona Establish Visionary Partnership to Serve Students in Iraq

      Students in Iraq can forge a path toward a U.S. degree while staying safe during the COVID-19 pandemic.   SULAIMANI, IRAQ—The University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona, USA, and American University of Iraq, Sulaimani, (AUIS) are pleased to announce a Global Campus partnership to help students earn a U.S. degree without leaving their home country during the COVID-19 pandemic.    “Not only does Global Campus help solve the mobility challenges of today caused by COVID-19, it is a meaningful and long-term effort at meeting the UN Sustainable Development Goal of providing accessible quality education to the world,” said University of Arizona President Robert C. Robbins.   Given travel restrictions, school delays and visa moratoriums, AUIS has created flexible, affordable options with the University of Arizona to allow students in Iraq to earn a full U.S. degree – or U.S. transfer credits – with full access to the AUIS campus.   “AUIS welcomes this innovative expansion of our academic collaboration with the University of Arizona, at a time when the world needs new approaches to meet the learning needs of an entire generation of students,” said AUIS President Bruce Walker Ferguson.    Students can choose from two new options:  Complete a full U.S. undergraduate degree, graduate degree, or graduate certificate online with complete access to the AUIS campus. Enroll in a pathway program of online courses to prepare for virtually any major and for eventual study in the U.S. Both programs include in-person tutoring and academic support, as well as access to AUIS computer labs and study areas. Clubs and community activities are also included through AUIS.   These new options, offered in partnership with the University of Arizona, are in addition to a microcampus dual degree program launched earlier this year, whereby students in Iraq may enroll at both institutions simultaneously to pursue dual bachelor’s degrees in civil engineering or mechanical engineering.    A new website,, presents students with flexible degree path options and guides them to an adviser who can help create a customized plan.    “The events that caused the current situation in international education have hastened the dawn of a new post-mobility world in which physical travel is unnecessary for the creation and transmission of knowledge across borders,” said Brent White, vice provost of global affairs at Arizona.   “Almost overnight, courses have transitioned to online, and international students are continuing to study while remaining safe at home in their own countries. We want to help them achieve their dreams of a U.S. degree, no matter the circumstances.”    American University of Iraq, Sulaimani AUIS is the first non-government, not-for-profit, American-style university in Iraq. It is also the first non-governmental university in the Iraqi Kurdistan Region to be accredited by both the Federal Government of Iraq and the Kurdistan Regional Government and the only university in Iraq to be a certified member of the Association of American International Colleges and Universities (AAICU). Consistently ranked among the top universities in the Kurdistan Region, AUIS welcomes students, 38% of whom are women, from diverse communities throughout Iraq and the Kurdistan Region.   University of Arizona The University of Arizona is a top-ranked public, research university in Tucson, Arizona, USA, and is classified as a Carnegie Foundation Research 1 institution. It is ranked in the Top 100 Best Global Universities by U.S News and World Report. The University of Arizona is known for advancing frontiers of interdisciplinary scholarship and entrepreneurial partnerships as a member of the Association of American Universities, the 62 leading public and private research universities in the U.S. The University has been a part of every planetary mission with NASA and is the fourth most awarded public university by NASA for research. Top 20 U.S. Public Research Institutions – Times Higher Education Top 1% of 20’000+ universities worldwide – Center for World University Rankings Top 100 in the world – U.S. News and World Report, Best Global Universities.  #11 Online Bachelor’s Program – U.S. News and World Report  
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