It gives me great pleasure to welcome Dr. Huda Abu-Saad Huijer as a new member of the Balamandian Family in her capacity as Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences.
Dr. Huijer joins UOB with an extensive academic experience as a tenured full professor and Founding Dean of the Hariri School of Nursing at the American University of Beirut. She received her BS in Nursing from AUB and her Masters and PhD from the University of Florida, USA. Her career span includes professorial positions at the University of California, San Francisco, University of Maastricht, the Netherlands, University of Surrey UK, and more recently AUB. During her academic tenure in the Netherlands as head of the Nursing Science Program, she was instrumental in developing the MSN (offered at three universities in the Netherlands and in Switzerland) and PhD programs, and in establishing the Centre for Nursing Research. Since her appointment at AUB in 2003 she has launched the MSN, RN-BSN, (bridging degree), and BA/BS-BSN (second degree) programs of study. More recently, she developed the PhD program in Nursing Science, which was launched in the academic year 2018-19. She coordinated the accreditation of both BSN and MSN programs by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) in the USA, making AUB School of Nursing the first school to be accredited by CCNE outside the US territories and the first School to become a regular member of the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) in the USA.
Dr. Abu-Saad Huijer is a prolific researcher, focusing primarily on pain management and palliative care in children and adults. To that effect, she has supervised a large number of PhD dissertations and has been lead investigator on a large number of funded projects in the Netherlands and in Lebanon on pain management, palliative care, and integrated models of care for the chronically ill. She is currently a lead investigator on a number of national projects and has published more than 300 articles in national & international refereed and professional journals and two books, one of which is on ‘evidence-based palliative care across the life span’. Dr. Abu-Saad Huijer has served on a number of international expert committees, most recent of which is the WHO expert panel on palliative care in children and the Lancet Commission on Global Access to Pain Control and Palliative Care. At the national level, she served as President of the Lebanese Society for the Study of Pain and is currently the Vice-President of the National Committee on Pain Relief and Palliative Care. In recognition of her work, Dr. Abu-Saad Huijer was elected International Fellow to the American Academy of Nursing (FAAN) in 2010 and is a fellow and founding member of the European Academy of Nursing Science (FEANS). It is worth mentioning that Dr. Abu-Saad Huijer was listed in 2020 among the world’s top 2 percent of scholars in her field.
Dr. Huijer received many awards & recognitions for her research work: Life Time Achievement Award from the McMillan Cancer Fund in London; Pioneers Award from the Order of Nurses in Lebanon; distinguished researcher award from the Scientific Society of Arab Nursing Faculties. She was also inducted into the Sigma Theta Tau International (STTI) Nurse Researcher Hall of Fame, awarded the International Association for the Study of Pain Honorary membership, and received the Princess Mona Regional Award for her significant contribution to the nursing profession. More recently, she received the National Center for Scientific Research career award for her lifetime research achievements and the AAAH (Asia-Pacific Action Alliance on Human Resources for Health) Recognition Award 2020 on her work in developing the healthcare workforce.
Dr. Abu-Saad Huijer assumes her new responsibilities at the helm of FHS succeeding Dr. Karim Echtay who has gracefully served as Acting Dean throughout the past two years. He managed to transform FHS into a leading school despite the unprecedented consecutive crises, successfully safeguarding the Faculty which has suffered immensely in the aftermath of the August 4th unfortunate explosion. For that, the institution will always be grateful to his tremendous efforts as a Dean, as an educator, and as a loyal member of the Balamandian Family.
Elias L. Warrak