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Jordanian university to sponsor graduate students at Auburn

28 Feb

Auburn University Graduate School Dean George Flowers (left) and Yarmouk University President Abdullah Al-Musa (right) shake hands after signing a cooperative agreement between the two universities.

A new cooperative agreement between Auburn University and Yarmouk University in Jordan will allow as many as 15 students to come from Jordan each year to pursue master’s and doctoral degrees in various disciplines at Auburn.

It is the newest of a number of such agreements that Auburn has with universities across the world to bring sponsored students to Auburn. Yarmouk University will fund the students’ graduate educations at Auburn with the expectation that they will later return to Jordan as faculty members.

Baker Ayoun, an assistant professor in the Hotel and Restaurant Management program at Auburn and a native of Jordan, said many of the initial students are expected to pursue master’s and doctoral degrees with an emphasis in Hotel and Restaurant Management.

Hospitality and tourism is a growing industry in Jordan, but the country’s universities have a lack of qualified faculty members in that area, Ayoun said. He expects the agreement between the two universities will bolster Yarmouk University’s cadre of faculty members specializing in hospitality and tourism while expanding Auburn’s alumni presence in the Middle East.

“This initiative will be a step in establishing that alumni center, which will help us to recruit even more students in the future,” Ayoun said.

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