Does your university as a body have women’s mentoring schemes, in which at least 10% of female students participate?

Based on a collaborative initiative with the Center for Entrepreneurship (CFE) and the Faculty of Business Administration at Beirut Arab University (BAU), and the Lebanese League for Women in Business (LLWB) and RCED, a workshop on “Women Empowerment for SME Management” was organized at RCED-Bekaa during December 8-10, 2016.


  • Promoting business management skills of rural women

  • Enhancing women’s role in local economic development

During the interactive sessions of the workshop, experts and mentors from BAU and successful business women from LLWB provided more than 35 women of all across Bekaa with knowledge and skills needed for business start-up and survival and good practice for building confidence and for resolving real-life business problems.

After a welcoming speech by RCED director, Dr. Safaa Baydoun, and CFE director, Dr. Wassim Itani, experts from the Faculty of Business Administration at BAU; Prof. Nehal Mostapha, Prof. Wagdi Higazi, Dr. Abdalla Nasreddine, Dr. Ekrami Mokhtar, Prof. Ahmad Slim and Dr. Alaa Abbas, exchanged with participats information and experience on challenges and important aspects necessary for successful management of women owned start-up businesses and SMEs. The experts also shared knowledge on the importance of the role of women’s entrepreneurs in economic growth and various aspects of successful business planning, management skills, finance and human resources management and marketing.

Moderated by the engineer Mrs. Najah Jaroush, the LLWB inspirational panel introduced the success stories of several women entrepreneurs; Ms. Yusr Sabra, Mrs. Haya elKassem, Mrs. Lina Idriss, Mrs. Kinana Rahhal and Mrs. Chantal Rbay.

Manager Mrs. Sabine Rbeiz Kassis from BLOM Bank, the sponsor of the event introduced the various funding products and explained the terms and conditions of each product wishing women entrepreneurs all the success through the different steps of their business development.

At closing ceremony certificates were distributed while women participants expressed their sincere appreciation for the efforts of the organizers and their wishes to attend for further training.

The U.S. Embassy in Beirut has the below opportunities that are available for university students in Lebanon:

  • Study of the United States Institutes (SUSI) – Women’s Leadership Program:

This is a 5-week exchange program that will be hosted by Saint Mary’s College in South Bend, Indiana in summer 2021. Female students who have an interest in women’s leadership and in learning about advocacy for women causes can apply. For more information on the program and to complete the application, please click here. The deadline to receive applications is January 11, 2021.

  • Study of the United States Institutes (SUSI) – Religious Freedom and Pluralism Program:

This is a 5-week exchange program that will be hosted by Temple University, Philadelphia in summer 2021. University students who have an interest in religious freedom and pluralism and want to learn about interfaith dialogue can apply. For more information on the program and to complete the application, please click here. The deadline to receive applications is January 11, 2021.

  • Community Engagement and Exchange (CEE) Program:

The CEE is a new civil society program for Lebanese youth who are between 20 and 27 years and are working on a community engagement initiative in Lebanon either in a professional or volunteer capacity with a vision to pursue a career working to support civil society. For more information on the program and to complete the application, please click here. The deadline to receive applications is December 23, 2020.

The U.S. Government pays for all major expenses, including roundtrip airfare, shared accommodation during the program, meals and health insurance.

I also want to draw your attention about EducationUSA which is a U.S. Government-sponsored program that offers free-of-charge counseling to students seeking to study in the United States. EducationUSA will hold a Virtual Fair for the Middle East and North Africa region from 10:00am-2:00pm EST on December 9 and 10, 2020. The fair will provide two different focus days - one for undergraduate students on December 9 and one for graduate students on December 10. Students can register herefor the fair and check theFacebookpage of the event.

The United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), with generous contribution of the Government of Japan collaborated with Beirut Arab University (BAU) and The Ministry of Industry in Lebanon to establish two new vocational training centers for Electricity and Solar energy at the BAU – Tripoli campus. The project aims to create economic opportunities and jobs in the construction sector for members of the host and refugee communities –especially vulnerable women and youth –since investment in skills development and innovation are crucial drivers of economic growth and development.

The project falls within UNIDO’s mandate to support Member States in achieving inclusive and sustainable industrial development (ISID) and within its full commitment to contribute to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The project also builds on BAU’s keenness to play a leading role in the achievement of the SDGs, specifically through the representation of SDG 9 – “Industry, innovation and infrastructure”, at the global cluster of Higher Education and research for Sustainable Development (HSED).

The project focuses on delivering training skills aligned with market needs and on serving the local communities in the North of Lebanon, especially vulnerable youth & women whose enrollment in the training is encouraged as part of this project. Beneficiaries will learn new skills and acquire on the latest technologies and practices in the market in order to increase their chances of finding a job.

So far, two Training of Trainers (ToT) sessions were completed whereby 40 trainers benefited from enhanced skills related to Home electricity & Solar energy. Currently, the center is conducting am/ pm consecutive sessions, giving the opportunity to the interested participants to develop their skills.

The center will continue delivering training under the supervision of UNIDO until December 2020. The courses introduce basic & advanced skills related to home electricity & solar energy installation in a modular approach.

The curricula will also focus on the health and safety practices to raise awareness regarding hazards that might occur while working on site. This is based on the most common accidents and safety problems identified in the market assessment conducted at the inception phase of the project.

The accelerated training will be followed by a soft skills session for interested trainees to help them understand the market and acquire the needed practical skills to find a job.

The trainees will also be provided with a training manual for their reference and future use, as well as a graduation kit including a set of tools to support their market access. Beneficiaries will also be provided with transportation fees to compensate their travel costs and a Certificate of Accomplishment delivered by Bureau Veritas.

Following December 2020, BAU will take the lead and keep sustaining the center through continuous training delivered to the local community in the North of Lebanon.