AUB Libraries Online Exhibits

Celebrating the Class of 1973

On the occasion of Reunion 2023, the University Libraries Archives & Special Collections Department has prepared this “virtual exhibit.” All of the images (photographs, posters, publications, etc.) in the document below are hyperlinked – either to larger versions of the images or to the original full text of the publication.

Robert E Najmey.jpg

Portrait of Robert E. Najemy, 

Dean of Students

From Dean of Students Robert E. Najemy

“The years pass, students come and go, but A.U.B. remains proudly and beautifully situated "above the waters of the deep blue sea" it would do us well to pause occasionally and to ponder those qualities, those elements which give an institution the strength, the hardiness, the endurance to forge ahead, through wars and famine, through riots and up-risings.

As formidable as the very solid rock upon which it has been built, as though as the durable cacti which have abounded the area, A.U.B. was started on a foundation of firm educational principles, the application of hard work, and unswerving dedication toward achieving a better life for all. Let us continue in this direction, recognizing that only such an institution can withstand the unwithering attacks of time. The mark of being an A.U.B. graduate should be reward enough for any man or woman.”[1]


Portrait of Samuel B. Kirkwood,

AUB President

From AUB President Samuel Kirkwood

“…AUB as a university is a gathering of scholars. This is an ancient definition that has stood the test of the years. In its own scholastic community AUB has counted outstanding scholars who have made their mark upon the world. It has its failures, too. But it has always represented a total level of excellence that has brought to Beirut a remarkable group of academicians. AUB offers a distinguished concentration of talent…”


“…AUB as a university is a community. We have within our own boundaries 650 faculty, full time and part time; 5000 students, undergraduate, graduate, and special; 2000 staff, including the Hospital and Farm. Beyond our walls there are 13,000 living alumni, throughout the world; 5,000 family members of our Faculty and Staff; 10,000 parents of our students. Thus, a total of 35,650 people are very directly associated with the University, not an insignificant number in itself…”


“…AUB as a university has a purpose. AUB was established to offer to the Arab world a university level education. It was a kind of education that placed its weight on developing individual thinking and even in those early days on a very modern approach to learning rather than teaching. AUB's founders were Christian missionaries, but their principles were broadly spiritual, and they demanded only that others be sincere in their own beliefs…”


“…We can be proud of AUB - and justly so. But at the same time, we can be critical of ourselves. The very essence of any university is the search for truth, and if the truth be that we can do better than we are doing, then we must recognize this…”[2]


Some numbers

« …At the end of June, 1972, the total number of degrees granted by the university was 17.253, and the number of diplomas or certificates was over 13,000. This year almost 1.000 degrees, diplomas or certificates are expected to be awarded.[3]

“…AUB has graduated 990 men and women students this year. This is a record figure as the number of graduates is almost 25% of the total number of students at the University…”[4]

[1] Robert E. Najemy, Dean of students AUB Campus Yearbook

[2] The Convocation Address by AUB President Samuel B. Kirkwood Opening the 1973-4 Academic year at the American University of Beirut AUB Bulletin

[3] Samuel Kirkwood, AUB President AUB Campus Yearbook

[4] Al Kulliyah Magazine 1973