Oriental Hall, etc.

Happenings, speakers, and events at the American University in Cairo in Summer 2017.

“Success in life cannot be measured by how much money we make or what position we have achieved, but rather what we have done to improve lives of other people who needed help.” That was the message to 634 AUC undergraduates in a commencement speech on June 17 delivered by Abdul Aziz Al Ghurair, CEO of Mashreq Group based in the United Arab Emirates. Noting his personal battles within corporate culture, he stressed the importance of challenging the status quo to achieve change. “I was cuffed by my peers and accused of damaging a healthy institution,” he said. “But I was not deterred by the criticism. Whatever career you choose, whatever job you do, do not be afraid of rocking the boat.”

AUC awarded Al Ghurair an honorary doctor of humane letters degree in recognition for his leadership and philanthropic contributions. Al Ghurair is also chairman of the board of trustees of the Abdulla Al Ghurair Foundation for Education, which partners with AUC to offer scholarships to high-achieving refugee youth. “We share the vision that philanthropic foundations, education institutions, and others can and must come together to open access to education to those who need it the most,” Al Ghurair said. “This is part of a new drive I am personally championing to ensure that no young person uprooted by conflict in our region should ever have to go without an education.”