LAU’s academic collaboration and partnership with Lebanese NGO the Makhzoumi Foundation was sealed this week with the signing of a contractual agreement. Students from LAU Gilbert and Rose-Marie Chagoury School of Medicine (SOM) will benefit from the facilities, equipment, services, and personnel of the outpatient health care provider, offering care to their patients and gaining the experience necessary as part of their education.
Thanking May and Fouad Makhzoumi for their “indefatigable support” to the university, LAU President Joseph G. Jabbra declared that the best gift in life is the gift of giving to others so that they may have life. “This is something that goes to the core of our university and this partnership gives our students the opportunity to get the training they need to go out and make the world a better place for all of us, especially in the area of health care and its delivery.”
A member of LAU’s Board of International Advisers, May Makhzoumi reminded the audience of her family’s long history with the university, which began with her grandmother, a graduate of the university, then named the American Junior College for Women. Makhzoumi praised the environment LAU offers its students of medicine, noting the up-to-date equipment at the affiliated UMC-RH university hospital, the excellent education provided by the professors and the state-of-the-art building that houses the School of Medicine. “I am very proud of the achievements of LAU and hope for many more collaborative projects,” she enthused.
The new agreement is in fact the second memorandum of understanding between the two institutions – the first having been signed with LAU School of Pharmacy last November. The two entities also enjoy a close collaboration in the field of civic engagement. “Your students excel not only on the academic level but also as dedicated volunteers,” said Makhzoumi.
To focus on this young generation is today, for Fouad Makhzoumi, crucial. “What LAU is giving its students is extremely important. And we all need to work together to offer alternatives to young men and women so that they are not attracted by fundamentalist movements. So I hope we will be able to do even more,” he said.
The Makhzoumis’ dedication was acclaimed by SOM dean Dr. Youssef Comair, who considered the event the achievement of a major milestone in the history of the young medical school. According to Comair the trainees will acquire exceptional clinical knowledge and outstanding experience from observing and interacting with the care team at the foundation. “But they will also learn the crucial principals of benevolence, generosity and shared social responsibility that the Makhzoumi Foundation instills, especially when it comes to serving the underprivileged,” he said before adding, “No school of medicine would be doing its job if it did not instill in its students these moral values.”