Dear AUIS Community:
On this lovely fall day, welcome to American University of Iraq, Sulaimani (AUIS). It is exciting to greet our returning students, faculty and staff, and to welcome new friends who join us for the first time on our beautiful campus.
Our new Vice President, Academic Affairs begins his first semester at AUIS. In addition to his superb administrative, teaching, and research credentials, Dr. Robert John Perrins has a very personal understanding of how a liberal arts university like AUIS can encourage students to explore questions and opportunities that will help them realize their full potential. We are fortunate to have Dr. Bob aboard as we pursue ever higher levels of academic excellence and additional international accreditation under our new Five-Year Plan.
Our Engineering Department has introduced streamlined degree requirements that meet U.S. accreditation requirements and better integrate our Core program, reducing the time required to complete degree requirements. The Department has also introduced new degrees in Artificial Intelligence and Robotics Engineering, and Industrial Engineering, that provide a solid foundation for workplace demands of the future.
Following the very successful introduction of the Medical Laboratory Sciences degree program, AUIS plans additional health-related degree programs in the future. Other new programs in IT, Business, and Social Sciences are also planned to be introduced in the coming year.
Our first University Day, held last May, attracted more than 6,000 participants to our campus to meet with students, faculty, alumni and staff. Visitors learned much about what makes AUIS so special. And, we were glad to welcome more than 2,000 guests to our June Commencement, at which a distinguished group of speakers congratulated not just our AUIS graduates but thirty-two graduates of the American University of Afghanistan who received diplomas from their President.
I am very pleased that despite the grave impact of the pandemic on the economy, a recent survey shows that AUIS graduates continue to find outstanding opportunities for employment and graduate study. Following the lifting of pandemic restrictions, our return to campus life highlights our University's distinctive strength in encouraging student learning outside as well as inside the classroom.
AUIS is the first Iraqi member of the Association of American International Colleges and Universities, and is the first private university to be recognized by the Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research in both Erbil and Baghdad. We are proud of all that AUIS -- independent, not-for-profit, and operated for the public benefit -- has achieved so far, and I am very proud of all of you.