The United States government, through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), today launched its $2.85 million support for Notre Dame University-Louaize (NDU) as part of the Higher Education Financial Aid (HEFA) Initiative. The launch event, which took place at NDU campus in Zouk Mosbeh, U.S. Embassy Deputy Chief of Mission Richard Michaels, USAID/Lebanon’s Acting Mission Director Nicholas Vivio, and NDU President Father Bechara Khoury attended the event, along with representatives from Education Development Center and USAID Lebanon.
The purpose of the HEFA Initiative is to increase access to educational opportunities for Lebanon’s higher education students by helping them overcome the financial burdens caused by Lebanon’s unstable political and economic situation. Through the HEFA Initiative, USAID will provide financial aid for up to 400 of NDU’s enrolled undergraduate students.
In his remarks, Deputy Chief of Mission Richard Michaels stated, “Today’s initiative is a reflection of the U.S. Government’s long-standing partnership with the people of Lebanon to improve learning environments, increase access to education, and advance student achievement…Today we are pleased to launch this partnership with Notre Dame University Louaize to provide financial aid to enrolled students who have been adversely affected by the deteriorating economic situation in Lebanon."
In his remarks, NDU President Father Bechara Khoury stated, “Our university’s partnership with USAID has begun and we look forward to making it a consistent source of inspiration to develop and expand our role in higher education as an accredited university…Our students are our pride and backbone, and we thank USAID for believing in our mission to foster graduates determined to challenge the status quo.”
The HEFA Initiative is managed by the Education Development Center under the five-year (2019-2024) USAID Higher Education Capacity Development (HECD) Program. To date, the HECD Program has supported over 900 higher education administrators and instructors from 10 universities in Lebanon with high quality institutional capacity building and professional development. HECD helps universities to better prepare their graduates to successfully enter the workforce. Nearly 4,500 students have so far benefited from job readiness and training programs offered by the project.