AUB Students Take Legal Action Against Their University

watchdogsgazette | TDS/Mohamad Azakir

Students of the American University of Beirut (AUB), Lebanon‘s #1 acclaimed educational institution, have filed legal complaints against their university.

This action comes as the university sent its students an official ultimatum that puts them at risk of losing their education if they do not pay their tuition at the 3,900 LBP exchange rate by March 2nd.

“For your safety and that of others, we still recommend that you settle your tuition payments,” warned AUB‘s administration.

Jad Hani, the Vice President of the student council at AUB, told The961 that a number of students resorted to the notary to pay their tuition at the official rate – which is a completely legal means to settle the tuition.

However, the university somehow said that it will not consider these payments, telling the students that their payments are null, warning that it will unregister them and disallow them access to courses and all related educational tools as of March 3rd..

Basically, if they don’t pay the way the university wishes, they will be out and their programs canceled; plainly put, they will be expelled.

In their rights, the students are fighting for what is the only reasonable way available to keep moving forward with their education, in a country drowning under a harsh economic crisis.

Almost all sectors in Lebanon have been badly hit by the crisis and almost all the population is in survival mode.

Yet, the university is not seeing it this way. It is neither role-modeling to its students, as a valuable life-lesson it owes to teach by example, the main crucial characteristic of any survival: flexibility.

Instead, according to the student council VP Jad Hani, “the university is still refusing to cooperate” with the struggling students although it is “completely aware that so many students will have to drop out.”

“Besides the fact that what they’re doing is completely unethical, it’s also illegal,” he noted.

Left with no other alternatives to reason with their university, dozens of AUB students have just resorted to lawyering up in order to contend against its illegal actions towards them.

They have now filed their first of two lawsuits, one that will protect the students from actions taken by the AUB administrations, and another to prove the validity of payments made through the notary public.

Witnessing the current situation unfurling, one can’t but admire the Lebanese youth for their fierce determination to continue their education against all odds and obstacles, and make it through this harsh phase without giving up.

They stand today as a prideful legacy of those who, before them, had survived the harshest of times in order for this nation to prevail.

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