AUB Libraries Online Exhibits


Between 1900 and 1905, and specifically during Daniel Bliss' Presidency, the College witnessed many changes, which affected students' life on several fronts: many new programs were established or expanded; between 1882 and 1903 the Faculty almost quadrupled in size (15 to 53); the much sought Irade, or the official recognition of the Medical School by the Ottoman authorities was finally secured in 1903, allowing the medical students to obtain their diplomas without having to travel to Constantinople to sit for examination, and thus galvanizing the Medical school's growth, which ultimately led to the opening of the Medical Hospital in 1905; The School of Nursing (1900) and Commerce (1905) were both established in this decade; many new buildings were erected, finalized and/or expanded, e.g.  Fisk Hall (1900), Main Gate (1901) Post Hall (1902), ; facilities were enlarged or remodeled; A new library and reading rooms were allocated; Physical Education was introduced into the curriculum and made compulsory; first attempts at organizing an SPC Alumni Association were initiated, etc. All of this had a great positive impact on the students, and resulted in a sense of pride and exhilaration at belonging to this institution, and in an awareness of the sense of responsibility and of the social, political and cultural commitments that such an affiliation implied. This sense of pride, as well as of responsibility is apparent both in the titles of many of the magazines displayed here Al Haz (1901); Happy Days of SPC (1903); Pioneers of SPC (1905), Islahiyat al Idadiyah, etc., and in the content of many of the articles featured in these magazines, and the mottos adopted by them: for example, the magazine Al Iffah, (Virtue) which cover page is displayed here, proudly features the following motto: انشؤوا الجرائد لان بها حياة الامة". A self-reflective sense of the importance of the students' efforts at expressing themselves, as well as a clear awareness of their unique placement as contributors to the education, progress and self-understanding of their peoples and nations is apparent in the wide variety of subjects and topics tackled, many of which extend to students societies activities and beyond and thus covering most of student life on campus,  and going to the heart of questions of nation- building, self-identity, social mission, language, unity, etc.