JANUARY 4, 2024

Showcasing Water Sustainability Initiatives: Faculty of Engineering Hosts UOB Water Expo 2023

Showcasing Water Sustainability Initiatives: Faculty of Engineering Hosts UOB Water Expo 2023

The Faculty of Engineering at the University of Balamand has recently hosted the UOB Water Expo 2023, a prestigious event that unfolded on December 19, 2023, at the Hariri Auditorium at the Koura campus. Distinguished attendees included Dr. Nasser Yassin, Minister of Environment (represented by Dr. George Metri), Professor Rami Abboud (Vice President for Internationalization and Engagement and Dean of the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Balamand), and the event organizer Dr. Yasmine Jabali (Assistant Professor at the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department). The event also drew the presence of various deans, directors, faculty members, staff, and students from the university.

The primary focus of the Water Expo 2023 was directed towards high school students, with over 200 participants from schools from the North of Lebanon actively engaging in the event. During the Expo, these students gained valuable insights into the crucial significance of the water sector and its direct impact on everyday life.

Prof. Abboud welcomed the students to the Expo, emphasizing the commitment of the Faculty of Engineering to sustainable development projects positioning the university as a leader in water resources and preservation. He stated: “The University of Balamand is truly dedicated to advancing our community, our nation, and our region as a leading institution of Higher education. This exhibition aligns with the strategic vision of the Faculty of Engineering to promote environmental awareness and encourage sustainable use of environmental resources." Prof. Abboud also praised Dr. Jabali’s dedication and excellence in supervising engineering students in their innovative water related design projects.

Highlighting the exceptional role of the University of Balamand in water-related issues, Prof. Abboud mentioned that the Times Higher Education Award MENA 2023 was granted to the Faculty of Engineering because of its initiative, the "Million Postcard Project" (1MAP). This project, managed by Dr. Jabali, in collaboration with the LEWAP Student Chapter, aimed to raise awareness and enhance efforts to address water challenges. This initiative, responding to the UN Game changers challenge, received significant support from international partners, including Wavemakers United from the Netherlands.

In his turn, Dr. Metri emphasized the significance of the Water Expo organized by the Faculty of Engineering, stating, "This Expo plays a fundamental role in disseminating knowledge, discussing innovative solutions, and promoting collaborative projects to contribute to addressing the challenges facing the water sector." He affirmed the Ministry of Environment's commitment to addressing and improving water management in Lebanon.

Dr. Jabali highlighted the importance of student participation in this exceptional event, stating, "What makes today special is the active engagement we anticipate from each of you. This is not just an exhibition; it's an immersive experience. We invite you to explore, question, and engage with the exhibits. Participate in the hands-on experiments designed to deepen your understanding of water-related processes. This is not just about theoretical knowledge; it's about fostering a connection with the vital resource that is: Water”.

On the other hand, Civil Engineering students organized a presentation for high school students to familiarize them with their design projects addressing water-related issues, aligning with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). These activities reflect the vision and ongoing commitment of the Faculty of Engineering to enhance global cooperation and adhere to the UN SDGS, on this occasion, SDG6: Clean Water and Sanitation.