Mo Ibrahim: AUC’s Longtime Friend and Civic Leader

A true philanthropist committed to supporting education, Dr. Mo Ibrahim, AUC trustee and founder of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, develops and supports programs that help advance strong leadership and good governance in Africa.

The Mo Ibrahim Foundation Graduate Fellowship for Nubian Students and the Mo Ibrahim Foundation Undergraduate Scholarship for Nubian Students were established in 2007 to support students of Nubian origin from Egypt and Sudan who are committed to the preservation and enrichment of Nubian culture and heritage. Six graduate students and three undergraduate students have benefited thus far from Dr. Ibrahim’s generous support.

According to Dr. Ibrahim, education is the most important investment that can be made in Africa’s richest resource – its youth. "The scholarship and fellowship at The American University in Cairo provide exactly the kind of educational opportunity that helped pave the way for my later successes," said Dr. Ibrahim. “The fragmentation of the Nubian community over the past half century makes it even more important to offer access to opportunities for young Nubian students.”

Jihad Mashamoun ’12, a recipient of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation Undergraduate Scholarship for Nubian Students, earned a degree in political science with minors in economics, history and philosophy. Not only did the scholarship allow him to pursue a rigorous liberal arts education, but, as Jihad explains, “[t]he scholarship gave me an opportunity to identify with my own tribal culture as one of the requirements of obtaining the scholarship was to take Nubian language courses."

For Jihad, Dr. Ibrahim’s philanthropy and commitment to education has had tremendous impact on the lives of students, and he was delighted to have the opportunity to meet and thank Dr. Ibrahim personally in Spring 2011. “He is a role model for my classmates and I. He has proven to us, through his contributions and activities, that there is great hope and potential for Africa if we, the citizens of the region, uphold our responsibilities and duties of working for the advancement and development of the region."

Dr. Ibrahim has also been a steadfast supporter of the University in other ways, including providing support for the AUC Annual Fund, which provides immediate funds to help sustain distinguished faculty members, fund curricular innovation, maintain AUC facilities, as well as provide financial aid and scholarships. Through Dr. Ibrahim’s visionary support, the University was able to establish the Office of Sustainability in September of 2011, which was designed to ensure that AUC is making efficient use of resources and contributing to responsible stewardship of the environment.