After a 31 year distinguished career in UK, Professor Rami Abboud decided to join the University of Balamand in Lebanon, his country of birth, under its new management and forward thinking vision of its new President, Dr Elias Warrak, in a dual role as Vice President for Internationalisation & Engagement and Dean of Faculty of Engineering.
Professor Rami Abboud was actively involved and played an instrumental role in the development, progress and resulting successes of the Department of Orthopaedic & Trauma Surgery and the University of Dundee since joining the department in 1988 as a postgraduate MSc student until his resignation in June 2019.
As a graduate in Electrical Engineering from the American University of Beirut in 1988, Professor Abboud continued his postgraduate studies and obtained an MSc and PhD in Biomedical and Rehabilitation Engineering in the field of musculoskeletal biomechanics and motion analysis at the University of Dundee in 1989 and 1995 respectively.
Professor Abboud has progressed from being a Postgraduate Student (1988) to Research Assistant (1993), to Lecturer (Assistant Professor) and Director of the Master of Orthopaedic Surgery (MCh Orth) Course (1996), to Senior Lecturer (Associate Professor) (2002), and subsequently to a Professor and Head of Department of Orthopaedics & Trauma Surgery (2007). His roles as Finance Manager (since 1998), Deputy Head of Department (2001-2003), Acting Head of Department (2003-2007), and Head of Department (2007-2019) allowed him to strategically develop and invest in the main core of the department’s activities namely taught courses (in-house and distance learning), and in research, in founding, developing and leading the Institute of Motion Analysis & Research (IMAR) (2003 - 2019) that has evolved under his leadership to become one of the leading facilities in the world for motion analysis and biomechanical research. IMAR’s facilities have allowed him and his team the opportunity to expand their activities into a multidisciplinary portfolio of teaching and research, collaborating with a diverse range of disciplines from medicine and allied health professionals to science and engineering as well as art and choreography. His research portfolio focusses on alleviating pain, enhancing quality of life and performance as is well evidenced from the theses he supervised and his peer-review publications.
Professor Abboud served as the 1st College (Medicine, Dentistry & Nursing) Lead for International Affairs (2008 - 2010) and Chairman of the School of Medicine Undergraduate Intercalated BMSc Honours Degree between 2002 and 2015, and demit the latter post when appointed Associated Dean for Learning & Teaching. The intercalated degree flourished under his leadership and has seen an increase in courses on offer from 7 to 14 associated with an increase of medical students intercalating from 15 to 100 students. Professor Abboud was appointed the Deputy Director of the Medical Education Institute (MEI) and the Director of its Postgraduate Education (2011-2014). In 2014, Professor Abboud was appointed Head of the Postgraduate Division at the Medical School. Professor Abboud was the first Associate Dean for Learning & Teaching at the School of Medicine under the University of Dundee’s most recent reorganisation structure in July 2015, a post he held until 15 January 2019.
Professor Abboud was an elected member of the University Senate for a record of 23 years between 1996 and 2019. He was elected by the Academic Council to the University governing body, Court, in 2004 and 2007 respectively, and in 2011 for a further 4 years by the University Senate, serving a record 11 years as an elected member of Court. Professor Abboud served on numerous other committees within the University and is a member of many respective Societies.
Professor Abboud has been a member of the Editorial Committee of the International Foot Journal since 1998 and the Foot and Ankle Surgery (2009-2013). In January 2007, he was invited by the China Instrument and Control Society to be the foreign member for the Editorial Committee of the Chinese Journal of Scientific Instrument and was promoted to Senior Member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). Professor Abboud is a regular reviewer to over 15 peer-review journals. In January 2013, Professor Abboud was appointed the Editor-in-Chief of the Foot for a period of 5 years, which has been renewed for a further 5 years starting January 2018.
Professor Abboud qualified as a certified accredited mediator, trained by Catalyst Mediation, in 2008, and was a member of the Scottish Mediation Network until 2015.
Professor Abboud’s dedication towards teaching, research and surgical training was recognised in 2011 by the award of a rare accolade, Honorary Fellow, of the Royal College of Surgeons of England which was formally recognised at the College’s Awards Ceremony on 18th January 2012. The number of living non-medically qualified Honorary Fellows shall not exceed 30 at any one time; a rare accolade that is usually awarded to internationally recognised figures in their particular speciality.
In June 2017, Professor Abboud received the University of Dundee most prestigious award, The Chancellor's Award, for his outstanding contributions to teaching at the University with a unanimous decision. Nominations are evaluated by a panel of peers drawn from senior colleagues from every school across the institution, professional services and DUSA. Successful nominees represent the very best teaching practice at the University, which is not only excellent but deemed to be outstanding in five categories: impact, sustainable change, enhancement to practice, support for transformational learning and the establishment of a legacy for practice.
In February 2018, Professor Abboud was awarded Honorary Professor of Orthopaedics from Maharashtra University of Health Sciences and Sancheti Institute of Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation, India, for his outstanding contribution to orthopaedics and educational opportunities offered to surgeons from India through the MCh (Orth) and other degrees.
In March 2018, The Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh awarded Professor Abboud an Honorary Fellowship ad hominem. A quote from the College website: The Honorary Fellowship is given to a limited number of individuals of outstanding academic merit, or other outstanding contributions to the profession. Those who receive this accolade are deemed by the College to be figures recognized worldwide in their particular specialty and have achieved distinction in their professional field and rendered special service to the “art and science of surgery”. It is extremely rare for such an accolade to be presented to a non-surgeon and it is extraordinarily rare to be presented to a non-medically qualified individual. This award will most likely make Professor Abboud the only non-medically qualified individual and engineer to have received both colleges of surgeons’ most prestigious awards worldwide.