‘New MBA scholarship scheme will boost Nigeria, Lebanon relations’
To contribute to Nigeria’s economic growth, a non-governmental organisation, Lebanese Nigeria Initiative (LNI), has launched a yearly “Master of Business Administration (MBA) scholarship programme,” for Nigerians to study at the American University of Beirut (AUB), in Lebanon.
According to the benefactors, the body set up an endowment fund with management of AUB, to sponsor MBA programmes for Nigerians.The Consul-General of Lebanon, Elias Nicolas, who spoke at the unveiling of the first beneficiary of the scholarship, said the new project would further strengthen the existing friendly relations and add to other economic and social developmental contributions of the Lebanese community in the country.
He commended the chairman of LNI, Mr. Faisal El-Khalil and other members of the board for working hard to achieve the objective, expressing hope that the beneficiary, a graduate of Petroleum and Gas Engineering, University of Lagos (UNILAG) Mr. Olubando Ajibola, will be an ambassador for promoting mutual core values and interest.
He said many high calibre minds; scientists and high profile politicians around the Middle East and beyond were graduates of the institution and other Lebanese universities.
Vice chairman of LNI, Mr. Ali Safieddine, said the initiative is to give back to the country for its positive and tremendous impact on the Lebanese community. He said: “Our aim is to send two students annually to AUB. We have raised enough money to send one, we eventually hope to raise more about $1.5million to send two students every year.”
“Our vision is that in the next 20 years, we will have about 40 to 50 people that have graduated from Lebanon who will come back and be in position to create changes and develop the country in ways we never dream of.”Explaining further, Safieddine said when they set up the fund and made the arrangement with the institution, they stipulated that only a Nigerian postgraduate student and no other nationality is eligible to enjoy the scholarship. He commended Ajibola, who emerged winner after a rigorous and highly competitive selection process, as the first postgraduate student selected for the scholarship.
Responding, Ajibola expressed appreciation for the gesture saying the knowledge he will gain will help impact positively on the nation and its economy. He promised to be an ambassador of change.
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