More US students turn to Lebanon for semester abroad following Arab uprisings elsewhere

March 20, 2012

While uprisings have toppled governments in some Arab nations and led to crackdowns in others, the Lebanese capital of Beirut has remained relatively calm, and is drawing more US students seeking a safer semester abroad. Approximately 700 US citizens and 2,000 Westerners now attend American University in Beirut (AUB), which has experienced a 50% increase in its Western population every year since 2007. Some 15 students in Egypt transferred to Lebanon last spring when violence erupted, says an AUB official. While the institution does not have an official position on the US travel warning in effect for Lebanon, the AUB official says she believes the benefits of studying in Lebanon outweigh the risks. Some students interviewed by Inside Higher Ed say they've had positive experiences studying in Lebanon, where they have felt safe. Inside Higher Ed