APP Staff

Rachel Gresk, Director of the Academic Preparatory Program

Ph.D. University of Nebraska-Lincoln (In progress)
M.A. American University
B.A. St. Mary’s College of Maryland

Rachel Laribee Gresk joined APP in the Fall 2009 as a teacher in the Level 1 pilot program. She has previously served as deputy director of APP and assumed the position of director in September 2013. She is a 2009 graduate of American University in Washington, D.C., where she earned a master’s degree in international development; she has a Bachelor of Arts in Chinese from St. Mary’s College in Maryland.  Rachel is currently earning a Ph.D in Higher Education Administration from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. 

Rachel Ramey, Deputy Director of APP

M.A. The American University in Cairo
B.S. Virginia Commonwealth University


Rachel Ramey joined AUIS in 2012. She was an APP instructor for five years before taking on the role of deputy director in Summer 2017. She holds a master's degree in TEFL from the American University in Cairo, and a bachelor's degree in Anthropology from Virginia Commonwealth University. Prior to joining the APP team, she worked as a teacher in the U.S.
Russell, Barbara, and Rachel Ramey. 'Exploring Grammar Across Disciplines For Sustained Success'. The Proceedings Of The 20th TESOL Arabia Conference: Methods And Means In ELT. Peter McLaren. 1st ed. Dubai: TESOL Arabia, 2015.

Lana Khalid, APP Student Record Coordinator

Lana Khalid graduated from the American University of Iraq, Sulaimani in 2016, obtaining her BA in English Journalism. She has received the Dean’s Award twice and the President’s Award once for her high GPA in the semesters.  She has taught the English language at different English institutes, in Sulaimani city. In 2015, she worked with Ms. Alana Marie Labrosse on Jamil Siddqi al-Zahawi and chose 7 poems out of about 700 pages of his collection of poems to be translated. She has also worked with a PhD candidate at Johns Hopkins on interviewing cancer patients on how they seek cancer treatment despite the ongoing conflict and wars in Iraq. She also translated and transcribed Arabic interviews, surveys, and documents for him. She worked as a translation officer at SREO Consulting, translating as well as transcribing interviews and documents from Arabic and Kurdish to English.

Liwar Mahdi Mansoor, APP Intern

Liwar Mahdi Mansoor is from Khanaqin and speaks Arabic, Kurdish (Sorani and Khanaqini), and English. She currently studies Business Administration as a major and Politics as a minor at AUIS. She is also planning to minor in Law. Liwar has been a volunteer for the orientation week of new students twice. She worked at the AUIS Voice as an editor. She was a tutor in the APP Speaking & Listening Center. 



Ghid Mouayed, APP Intern

Ghid is a 19 year old, ambitious and hardworking female. She was born in Baghdad and raised in Jordan where she lived her early childhood before coming back to Iraqi Kurdistan. In her childhood she studied at Pioneers of the Future. Then In Middle School she moved to The Academic modern Arabic Schools in Amman. She then moved to Kurdistan in Erbil and studied at Chian College School, where she studied for 5 years. “I love traveling and discovering the world, and I’m always curious to learn new things. I have been to Cyprus, Turkey, Jordan, Syria, Egypt, Tunisia, and Greece and Iraq. I believe that AUIS has an absolutely tremendous effect on developing my skills and dreams, no matter how big my dream is. Here at AUIS, they teach us how to dream big and be responsible and logical to achieve our goals. I am now studying Business administration, I love my major and I’m sure AUIS will offer many opportunities for me to work in that field!” She says.

Abdallah Salm, APP Intern

Abdallah Salm is a 20 year old student from Baghdad. He is now based in Sulaimaniyah. He likes writing articles and giving his opinion regarding any problems he notices in the society. He enjoys trying new experiences in different domains and dislikes routine. He finished the first 3 years of primary school in Baghdad's school in Hay Al-Bunok, his hometown, and got his primary certificate from the Martyr Nazih Yousef Primary School in Syria. He graduated from Al-Farouq High School in Baghdad in 2015 with a 85.7 baccalaureate average.

“I have been in all the provinces of Iraq except Duhok and Mosul and if I get the chance, I will visit both without hesitation. I am Business Major, second semester. My ambition is to establish my own company that is specialized in providing the needs of the community and make it a better place.”

Mahmood Qahtan, APP Intern

Mahmood Qahtan Adnan, joined the American University of Iraq Sulaimani (AUIS) in fall 2015. Majoring in IT and minoring in Business Administration. He received the dean’s award and the president’s award once each for his performance during his studies. He has volunteered for different organizations, companies, including Kurd Idol and Indigo. He also worked with the Center of Informatics and Data Analytics (CIDA) to translate some of their articles to Arabic and Kurdish. He is currently an intern in APP and in his junior year at AUIS.