Friday, 19 May 2017

Pre-Departure Orientation

IXO successfully completed the pre-departure orientation for Fall 2017 outgoing exchange students last month. Our peer advisors led the orientation and provided the students with all the information required for their semester abroad. This was followed by a dinner where the students met other IXO students and alumni, who shared their study abroad stories. We wish all Fall 2017 outgoing students the very best and hope they have a wonderful study abroad experience.

Outgoing Fall 2017 students

IXO Exploring UAE

Current exchange students have continued exploring the UAE and Arab/ Islamic culture. They visited the Islamic Civilization Museum in Sharjah on the occasion of Al Israa Wal Miraj. They also experienced an overnight desert safari and took a trip to Abu Dhabi to visit the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque and Saadiyat Island. Along with their explorations, they have enjoyed sampling many different Arab cuisines. 

Exchange students at the desert safari
Exchange students at an Iraqi restaurant
Exchange students at Saadiyat Island

Thursday, 18 May 2017


Thirty students from the Conservatoire National des Arts et M├ętiers (CNAM), France, visited AUS along with Professor Gilles Perrenot and Mohamed Lachi from the civil engineering department. They met with Dr. Linda Angell and Lille de Guzman from IXO, and then proceeded for a quick campus tour before attending two engineering class lectures. 

Student group from CNAM at AUS

Tuition Exchange Updates

AUS maintains two tuition exchange scholarship programs:

Council of Independent Colleges –Tuition Exchange Program (CIC-TEP):

The Tuition Exchange (TE)

Congratulations to Sarah Abu Al Foul, daughter of Dr. Bassam Abu Al-Foul (Economics), who has been awarded a Tuition Exchange scholarship to pursue her degree at Westminster College in Salt Lake City, Utah, starting in Fall 2017.

Also, IXO extends congratulations to the following graduating students, all of whom pursued their degrees under our tuition exchange programs: Yousr Dhaouadi, Syracuse University (TE); Amal Bahloul, Pepperdine University (TE); and Rhea Creado, Woodbury University (CIC-TEP).

Tuition Exchange program applications will be accepted this fall from faculty or staff with dependents beginning their studies in the 2018-19 AY. Applications for the TE program will be accepted up to the deadline on November 18, and applications for the CIC-TEP program will be accepted up to the deadline of January 20.

Please contact Dr. Linda Angell at for more information.

AUS Graduate Gets Into MIT

AUS alumnus Ali Al-Sammarraie, who studied abroad at Louisiana State University (LSU) in Fall 2014 and then graduated with a degree in architecture, has just been accepted into the Master in City Planning program at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the USA. After graduating AUS, he went to work for Perkins + Will for two years, before applying to pursue higher studies. Ali told us, “part of my story is IXO,” and explained that his exchange program at LSU helped him realize his ability to rise above any challenge.

We wish Ali the best with his upcoming studies at MIT!

Ali at MIT

Spring Break Stories

During the Spring Break in April, our IXO students travelled the world. Incoming exchange students Caleb Bullard and Chase Connor went to Egypt, where they visited the Pyramids of Giza, the Red Sea, Cairo, Luxor, and Aswan, and ended their trip with a cruise along the Nile River. Meanwhile, Josephine Ekwall and Lauren Slade went to Tbilisi and enjoyed the beautiful mountains in Georgia.Other students visited Thailand. IXO Peer Advisor Dinete Kollanur visited the United Kingdom, where he bumped into our CIEE Coordinator Abu Bakr Alani during a soccer tournament in Manchester. 

Left to Right: Dinete and Abu Bakr in Manchester
Caleb (left) and Chase (far right) on their trip to Egypt

IXO Student Receives Scholarship

Bianca Tardio, a Fall 2016 exchange student from Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU), recently received the VCU Upperclassmen Scholarship for strong academic performance. During her application process, she wrote an essay about how studying abroad here at AUS impacted her, and described how she joined the VCU Global Education Office as a volunteer to encourage VCU students to study abroad. IXO congratulates her on this wonderful achievement.

Farewell to Graduating PAs

We bid farewell to all of our graduating Peer Advisors: Dinete Kollanur (SBA), Seham Nasser (SBA) and Tarek Alsayed (CEN). IXO congratulates them on completing their bachelor’s degree in their respective fields, and wishes them all the best for their future endeavors. They will be deeply missed. 

Left to Right: Lillie, Linda, Dinete, Seham, Tarek, Grace

Welcome Back!

IXO is in the process of welcoming back all AUS students who studied abroad in Spring 2017. We love this time of the year when we get to hear all about our students’ overseas adventures.

IXO Student Contributes to Flashbacks

We hope you all saw Flashbacks, a collection of six short plays that ran in the College of Arts and Sciences last month. We attended, and were proud to note that former IXO student Julian Drumm (see above) from Westminster College, USA, had written one of the acts named “Second Chances.” In addition, our IXO colleague Abu Bakr Alani, CIEE’s Resident Director, also acted in “Baba Ghanoush,” another act in this play.

IXO Connections Are For Life

Incoming Fall 2014 exchange student Carlos Aguero from University of New England unexpectedly ran into fellow exchange student Julian Drumm from Westminster College in Salt Lake City, Utah recently. They were happy to meet for the first time after having spent a semester here at AUS together.

Left to Right: Carlos and Julian in Utah

Best of Luck

IXO wishes everyone the best of luck with their upcoming final exams. We wish you all a relaxing holiday and safe travels over the summer, and extend our heartfelt best wishes during the holy month of Ramadan.

Great Publicity Recently

IXO received a lot of great news last month!

AUS was ranked as the most diverse student body in the world by Times Higher Education:

US News voted the UAE as the number one destination for study abroad:

Sharjah was recognized as a top 100 student-friendly city by QS World Rankings:

The UAE was shown to be the second safest country in the world by World Economic Forum:

In response, Dr. Linda Angell contributed an AUS blog posting about why AUS is the best place to study abroad within the UAE:

Thursday, 27 April 2017

Jodi Hicks Visits IXO

Jodi Hicks, Assistant Director of Overseas Programs from Chapman University in California, visited IXO on March 15. She met with Administrative Assistant Lillie de Guzman and the IXO team during her visit. Chapman University is also a listed ISEP Exchange Partner university.

Left to Right: Jodi Hicks and Lillie de Guzman

AUS Wins Moot Court Contest

Three students from the AUS Department of International Studies won the first annual GCC Jessup Friendly Moot Court Competition hosted by Kuwait International Law School in March. The team will represent the UAE in the Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition in the US, where they will be the highest ranked GCC participant. We extend our congratulations to them on their achievements! Find the news article at

International relations students in Kuwait


Tanya Kramer, Assistant Director of Study Abroad/International Student and Study Abroad Services, along with her colleague Matthew Dunham, brought 11 students from North Dakota State University (NDSU), USA, for a Friday visit to AUS last month. They were given a campus tour and engaged in conversation with our peer advisors at the IXO lounge.

We thank those in IXO who facilitated the tour and discussions, especially given that this visit took place during the weekend.

NDSU students with the IXO team

Pizza and Conversation

Just before Spring Break, IXO and the Academic Support Center (ASC) jointly hosted a Pizza and Conversation night for current exchange students to have a relaxed discussion on cultural issues related to AUS, Sharjah, the UAE and the Arab/Islamic world. Topics included views on Emirati hospitality, relationships, modest dressing, study abroad experiences so far, and other cultural differences. This event created a positive space, halfway through the semester, for the students to further understand the Arab culture and get a new perspective into their experience of the UAE.

IXO, ASC and students at the IXO Lounge

Bullfighting and Archaeology

Exchange students, along with the IXO team, ventured to the corniche in Fujairah to witness traditional Emirati bullfighting. On the way over, students also made a stop over at the Mleiha Archaeological Center. At the center, students learned about the UAE’s historical Bedouin culture and saw artifacts from the historical village of Mleiha.

IXO team and exchange students at the bullfight

World Patch for Graduates

IXO will be handing out world patches to all graduating students who have studied abroad via IXO to honor their achievements and congratulate them on completing their higher education.

We encourage students who are graduating in Spring 2017 to stop by and collect these badges from our office in the main building (MG 43).

World patch for graduating students who studied abroad

UAE voted best country for study abroad!

According to a survey completed by 8,000 Millennials, UAE was ranked the best country to study abroad (followed by Singapore and India) as reported by the US News. The attributes assessed during the survey included cultural accessibility, enjoyment and cultural attractions. Please find the complete article at

IXO Participation in Global Day

A couple of our exchange students participated in cultural club performances at the AUS 2017 Global Day. Jade Williams from Howard University participated in the Nigerian Cultural Club performance and Rainie Grant from Butler University participated in the Palestinian Cultural Club performance.

Jade performing with the Nigerian Cultural Club

Rainie performing with the Palestinian Cultural Club

Mohammed Joins IXO

Mohammed Abdelsalam joins the IXO Team as a new Peer Advisor. Mohammed studied abroad at Virginia Tech, USA, in Spring 2016 through ISEP Exchange and has been an active member in all IXO events. We are pleased to have him join our team!

New peer advisor Mohammed Abdelsalam

Zachary Londo Visits IXO

IXO enjoyed a surprise visit from Zachary Londo in March during his spring break in the UAE. Zachary is an aerospace engineering student at the University of Alabama and had studied abroad at AUS in Spring 2016 via API. We hope Zachary enjoyed his spring break here in the UAE!

Zachary Londo with Grace Morales in IXO

Welcome Back

IXO welcomes all students after an exciting and adventurous spring break!

Scholarships Abroad

Former IXO Peer Advisor and international relations major Anusha Grewal is currently studying abroad with a scholarship at Cyprus International University as a visiting student. She had previously been abroad in Spring 2016 as a part of the Semester at Sea program. 

Anusha found schools outside of the US and UK that provide scholarships for international students. She advised that students consider going abroad as a visiting student, as these programs can sometimes be very affordable.

Outbound Summer Study Abroad Process

Are you studying abroad this summer? Please remember that all outbound summer study abroad applications are processed directly through the Office of the Registrar (MG10B). IXO does not collect applications for outbound summer study abroad.

Students can download the Summer Study Abroad Course Approval Form here:

Study Abroad, Spring/CY 2018

Applications are now open for AUS students who want to study abroad in Spring 2018, or for the full calendar year of 2018. The deadline to apply is May 6, 2017.

Visit IXO (MG43) to talk to a Peer Advisor about your many options. To apply, or for more information, visit or contact us at

Tuesday, 11 April 2017

A Musandam Adventure

Dr. Linda C. Angell shares a recent IXO adventure:

Every semester, IXO plans a dhow cruise out of Dibba in the Musandam Peninsula for that semester’s cohort of study abroad students.
For our Spring 2017 trip, we planned an early departure from campus, with 32 of us leaving at 6:30 am from the Library Roundabout. We arrived at the Omani border by 9 am, and sailed right through immigration without any problems. We parked our bus in the sandy parking lot just next to the marina and climbed on-board our dhow.
The weather that day was perfect, and we had a fabulous day enjoying the views, swimming in the sparkling emerald waters in several coves, snorkeling, exploring the little beach villages, falling off the banana boats, visiting the natural limestone caves, having our lunch, jumping off the boat, reel fishing, and catching a barracuda.

By the time we pulled back into the harbor at 6:30 pm, as the sun was setting and the fish market onshore was bustling, we were all tired and sunburnt and happy – looking forward to a nap during the ride back to campus. We jumped into the bus and set off. As we were departing the parking lot, we found the way was blocked by a variety of boat trailers that had parked haphazardly around the entry points. The bus driver saw an incline just ahead that looked like it led to a more spacious area, so off we went. We got about 50 meters before the wheels started spinning, and the bus became mired in sand.

The guys all piled off, and soon were busy working to put stones and wood under the tires, to provide some traction. After a couple of attempts to drive away, the women also clambered down to lighten the load a bit and hopefully, to help free up the bus. 

Over the next two hours, we all watched in fascination as a parade of progressively larger vehicles and bigger crowds stopped by to try their luck at freeing up the bus.  First, a very nice Omani gentleman in a Land Rover with a winch parked nearby, and after a lot of fuss and confusion around the front of the bus trying to figure out the best place to attach the winch, the Land Rover gave it a try.  The attempt drained its battery without any sign that the bus was budging, and the Land Rover had to be jump-started. 

Next, another Omani gentleman in a pickup truck stopped and offered to get the bus unstuck for a mere 1,000 AED. He had a ‘special system’, he told us, that was guaranteed to get the bus out. We talked him down to 500 AED, and told him the money was his if he could get us out of there! He tried, no luck.  So that was Plan B.

Meanwhile, the crowd was growing thicker – it appeared that we were to be the Friday night entertainment for this small Omani village.  Probably, there were 200 people all milling about, in a rather carnival atmosphere! Someone must have called Civil Defense, because they showed up around then, along with some guys in hard hats. There was a lot of conferencing going on. Every effort to move the bus also involved a group of 20-30 people at the back (or sometimes the front), pushing with all their might – it really was a Herculean effort for all involved!

Eventually, a large flat-bed truck pulled up, the kind you see towing broken-down dump trucks, etc. The flat-bed was hydraulically lowered down to form a kind of platform, and a larger winch was attached. After a lot of hubbub, another attempt was made until the chain snapped with a loud cracking sound. Still the bus made no sign of moving. The large flat-bed truck pulled away.

A few moments later, shouting could be heard all around us as a backhoe-type of heavy earth moving vehicle came up to lend a hand. We all thought that this must be the moment we were waiting for, and we were filled with hope and good cheer! The backhoe tried pulling from the front of the bus, and then went around to the back – it tried rocking the bus back and forth – but really that bus was simply not going anywhere. That was becoming abundantly clear. 

Meanwhile, we had been standing on this beach, with no facilities of any kind nearby, for approximately 2 hours, and we were all beginning to feel the need for some personal comforts. The situation was looking progressively more hopeless, and the bus was now displaying cracked windows and peeling paint from all the pushing and shoving. 

Increasingly desperate phone calls to the bus company, and the Transportation people at AUS, were being made while these attempts were going on. It transpired that the bus company was unable to send another (replacement) bus to pick us all up in Oman, as that meant a driver with a visa to enter Oman, and that required a day or two to organize. So, after two hours stranded, the decision was made to walk the two kilometers to the UAE border, where a bus could actually be sent to rescue us.

We started walking, and we must have been a real sight, the 32 of us all strewn out and straggling along the road to the border. Some of our amazing Peer Advisors began flagging down cars and asking if they could assist by shuttling us in groups of 2-3 to the border. The driver of one of the cars we stopped said he had a bus, and went off to get it – a few moments later he pulled up with a bus that was miraculously big enough to fit all of us. Once to the border, we walked across, and over to a pleasant beach park just inside the UAE border – a place where we could sit and rest and where we had facilities and restaurants nearby. There were several families out and enjoying the park, with camp fires, etc., and truly the situation could have been far worse. The moon was beautiful and the stars were out, and we had a football in our midst.

We waited there for 2 hours while a bus was dispatched from AUS to come and get us. The bus arrived around 10:30 pm, and we all clambered exhaustively (but happily) on board. We got back to the AUS Campus around 12:55 am, literally 5 minutes before the curfew! Success, in the face of adversity! And another great story to tell our friends and colleagues.

Tuesday, 28 March 2017

IXO Students Explore UAE

Incoming exchange students of Spring 2017 have been busy exploring the UAE in the past month. In our very own city of Sharjah, the 2017 Sharjah Light Festival, where iconic landmarks were adorned in vivid colors accompanied by beautifully composed music, took the students by surprise. They were able to witness art in an Islamic setting and enjoy these installations that were located in various areas of the city, such as Al Majaz Waterfront, the Blue Souk and Al Qasba.

Students were also taken to the region’s first multicultural festival park, Global Village in Dubai, where they enjoyed cultural shows, food and shopping from pavilions set up by 75 different cultures from around the world.

While in Dubai, exchange students and the IXO staff visited the Mirzam Chocolate Factory at Alserkal Avenue to experience the flavors of real cocoa and richness of the only locally made chocolate in UAE. During the visit, they toured the factory and enjoyed brownies and hot chocolate.

Since football is a vital part of the UAE’s popular culture, CIEE coordinator Abubakr Alani arranged for students to attend an Emirati league match between Al Ahli club of Dubai (one of the best teams and the reigning champion) vs. Al Shabab club. Students had kushari, a famous Egyptian dish, prior to the game.

They also took a trip to Al Ain where they enjoyed the hot water springs beneath the Jabel Hafeet mountains followed by some barbeque.

Finally, in mid-March, they had a day-long dhow cruise around the scenic fjord areas of Musandam, Oman, departing from Dibba.

 Chocolate tasting in Mirzam
 Students barbeque at Hot Springs Park, Al Ain
 Students at Dibba, Musandam, Oman

Dr. Hamade returns to IXO

Dr. Mona Hamade, a previous visiting scholar at AUS, returned recently to follow up on her research and discuss her forthcoming book, expected to be released shortly. She came to AUS from Cambridge University, UK, about three years ago to undertake her PhD research focused on Emirati women and entrepreneurship. She has since completed her PhD and has established organization Unity for Global Development in London (

IXO congratulates Dr. Hamade on her achievements!

 Dr. Angell and Dr. Hamade at IXO

Dr. Russell Lucas, MSU at IXO

Dr. Russell Lucas, Director, Global Studies in the Arts and Humanities, Michigan State University (MSU) met with Dr. Linda C. Angell, Director of IXO, Dr. Jeniece Lusk, Department of International Studies, and Dr. Rana Raddawi, Department of English, about engaging in survey research. Earlier this year, Dr. Lucas brought to AUS a group of students who are enrolled in Global Studies and Muslim Studies programs at MSU and showed great interest in pursuing the graduate programs here at AUS.

Dr. Russell Lucas

International Students Contribute Everywhere

According to a recent paper by the Institute of International Education (February 2017), which can be found at, international students in the US contribute significantly to the country financially, academically, socially and innovatively. These contributions hold for incoming international students to the Middle East as well. They help in shaping the UAE’s economy in many ways and influence our students greatly by expanding their perspectives and understanding of the world outside.

Passing of a Dear IXO Friend

The IXO team were very saddened by the recent passing of Ahmad Al-Zuhairy from College of Engineering. Ahmad was planning to study abroad next year, and was engaged to one of our prior incoming exchange students. We express our deepest condolences to his close friends and family.

10 Simple Steps to Study Abroad

Embark on a life-changing journey with these 10 simple steps.

Rainie Grant at the AUSMUN

Incoming exchange student Rainie Grant from Butler University took part in the 10th annual AUS Model United Nations (AUSMUN), and was elected to serve as the President of UNHCR after undergoing several months of moderator training and committee research.

We are proud of Rainie for having taken part in such a prestigious event and wish her success in her future endeavors.

Rainie Grant during AUSMUN

Exchange Alumni Stop By IXO

Miwa Yamanaka (International Christian University, Japan) and Majdal Ismail (Louisiana State University, USA) visited IXO during the past few weeks, after studying abroad here during the Academic Year 2015-2016.

Miwa was traveling to this region and decided to visit the IXO team along with her AUS friends Mohammed Al Labadi and Douriya Djabri, both of whom she met during her time studying at AUS. Majdal stopped by IXO with her cousins Yazan and Anas during her visit to the UAE for her cousin’s wedding.

We are always excited to see our students come back and visit us. We wish Miwa and Majdal the very best!

From left to right: Mohammed, Miwa and Douriya

From left to right: Yazan, Majdal and Anas

Anna Visits IXO

Anna Ray visited IXO a few weeks ago, bringing back fond memories from the early years of our office when she joined Dr. Linda C. Angell in founding IXO in early 2010. She was our very first advisor, and she now lives in Houston, Texas.

We were very excited to welcome her back to IXO after all these years! 

From left to right: Lillie, Grace, Anna and Linda

Boston College Partnership

As a part of the exchange program, we are partnered with Boston College and we currently have our first student studying abroad through this partnership. His name is Ammar Alnimr and he is attending Boston College in Massachusetts, USA, for Spring 2017.

Ammar said that he has had a very warm welcome and that he is particularly enjoying experiencing a different culture. “Boston College is a Jesuit school and it respects all ethnicities and religions. It welcomes diversity and promotes its students to be open to change and success,” he said.

Ammar said he participates in the Arab Student Association and the Muslim Student Association, goes to the nearby mosque regulary and also participates in Arab cultural activities. 

He said he has deep respect for the people of Boston, as they are peaceful, educated, goal-focused, success-oriented and interested in contributing to their society.

There are several facilities at the historic college, such as a meal plan, a recreational complex with a gym and pool, and libraries. The campus is in the suburban part of the city and is very close to downtown. He has also travelled to New York, Florida and the Bahamas. He estimates that the cost for dorms, the meal plan and insurance would be around  US $9,000.

He said that this experience has been uplifting in many ways and recommends that AUS students go to Boston College.

We are glad that Ammar embarked on this journey and we look forward to welcoming him back soon!

 Ammar Alnimr at Boston College

Congratulations, Maha

Maha AlShehhi, a Friend of IXO and an alumna of the AUS College of Engineering, recently shared excellent news regarding her acceptance into the Master of Public Policy at Mohammed Bin Rashid School of Government, UAE.

She has been a huge support to our incoming exchange students over the past few years by inviting them to spend an evening with her family at her house, conducting presentations, attending our Welcome Mixers, and participating in other events to educate them about Emirati Culture.

We wish her the best and thank her for all her support.

Have a Great Spring Break!

On behalf of IXO, we wish all a lovely Spring Break.

IXO on Social Media

To get instant news and updates from us, follow us on Facebook at IXO at AUS, Twitter at @IXOatAUS, Instagram at @ixoataus, and our new Snapchat account at ixoataus. Also, check out our blog at 

Study Abroad, Spring/CY 2018

Applications are now open for AUS students who want to study abroad in Spring 2018, or for the full calendar year of 2018. The deadline to apply is May 6, 2017.

Visit IXO (MG43) to talk to a Peer Advisor about your many options. To apply, or for more information, visit or contact us at

Outbound Summer Study Abroad Process

Are you studying abroad this summer? Please remember that all outbound summer study abroad applications are processed directly through the Office of the Registrar (MG10B). IXO does not collect applications for outbound summer study abroad.

Students can download the Summer Study Abroad Course Approval Form here:

Wednesday, 1 March 2017

Monash University Visits AUS

Delegates from Monash University in Australia visited AUS on February 2. The delegation included Dr. Abid Khan, Vice President and Deputy Vice Chancellor of International Engagement; Dr. Sarah Newton, Deputy Dean, External Relations; and Dr. Nizar Farjou, Associate President-ENACA; who met with AUS representatives Dr. Linda C. Angell, Director of IXO, and Kevin Mitchell, Vice Provost for Undergraduate Affairs and Instruction, after a tour of our campus.

 Monash University, Melbourne, Australia

Exchange Students Experience Camel Racing

Early on the morning of Friday, January 27, exchange students attended the annual Al Marmoum Camel Racing Festival on the outskirts of Dubai. Camel racing, a major traditional sport in the UAE, helps preserve the heritage and culture of this region.

Students got to experience this aspect of Emirati culture and learn about camel racing along with other activities associated with this sport. 

Camel racing at the Al Marmoum racetrack, Dubai
Exchange students at the Al Marmoum racetrack

Friends of IXO Mixer

IXO ended its Spring 2017 incoming orientation program by hosting a Friends of IXO Mixer event at the Main Building. This event provided a great opportunity for incoming study abroad students to get to know AUS students and staff, and enabled interesting conversations about the life and culture of the UAE.

The mixer was attended by a variety of students and faculty interested in meeting and welcoming our Spring 2017 exchange students.

IXO especially would like to thank the Emirati Cultural Club for attending and providing karak tea and logaimat (traditional Arabic sweets), and Maha Al Shehhi, AUS alumna, for providing traditional Emirati tea.   

Emirati Cultural Club and IXO team at the mixer          IXO Peer Advisors, outgoing & incoming
Emirati Cultural Club offers traditional hospitality          study abroad students, & Friends of IXO

Introducing the IXO Team for Spring 2017!

IXO would like to welcome recently returned AUS students who studied abroad in Fall 2016, and now will be serving on the IXO team as new Peer Advisors. Welcome to the team, Rashad, Divya, Abubaker, Deema, Bassam, Ahmed and Laith!

Outbound Summer Study Abroad Process

IXO does not collect applications for outbound summer study abroad. All outbound summer study abroad applications are processed directly through the Office of the Registrar (MG10B). Check the AUS website or email the Office of the Registrar at

However, anyone interested in studying abroad during summer is welcome to stop by IXO and check out our 2017 Summer Course Booklet to view some of the opportunities and programs that are available. Also, you can download the Study Abroad Course Approval Form from our website,

Study Abroad in Spring or Fall 2018

Applications are now open for AUS students who want to study abroad in Spring 2018 or Fall 2018 semester or for the full academic year of 2017-18.

The deadline for Spring 2018 applications is May 6, 2017. The deadline for Fall 2018 applications is December 2, 2017.

Visit IXO (MG43) to talk to a Peer Advisor about your many options. To apply, or for more information, visit or contact us at

Summer Intensive Arabic Language Program 2017

The Department of Arabic and Translation Studies at AUS has opened registration for its Summer 2017 Intensive Arabic Language Program.

The program provides participants the opportunity to earn 6 credit hours while studying in a campus environment with students from around the world.

Participants must meet the requirements for admission to AUS, and can apply via our online application at

The deadline to apply for this is March 4, 2017.

Study Abroad Programs Outside USA

American University of Sharjah (AUS) offers many study abroad program options outside the US. We encourage students to check out some of the many international options available via our bilateral partners (Maastricht University, Simon Fraser University, University of Victoria in Canada), and via ISEP Exchange/Direct programs ( in France, Korea, Finland,
Australia, Japan and other countires.

We have sent many students to these universities in the past and have heard wonderful stories about their experience.

To learn more, visit our IXO Facebook page,, or stop by our office in the Main Building (MG43) to talk to our Peer Advisors.

Sunday, 12 February 2017

Marymount University

IXO was recently visited by 24 delegates from Marymount University in Arlington, VA, USA. This delegation was hosted by Abu Bakr AlAni, Resident Director of the Council on International Educational Exchange (CIEE). The delegates toured the AUS campus and facilities. They also met with Suzy Sikorski, IXO’s Fulbright Scholar who studied abroad at AUS in Fall 2014. Sikorski gave a presentation about the Emirati art scene.

 Suzy Sikorski with delegates from Marymount University

Michigan State University

IXO was visited last month by delegates from Michigan State University (MSU). The delegates included: Dr. Tessa Dunseath, Executive Director, Michigan State University, Dubai; Dr. Russell Lucas, Faculty, Michigan State University, USA;     Dr. Camelia Suleiman, Faculty, Michigan State University, USA; and fourteen MSU students. These delegates toured the AUS campus and met with Dr. Linda Angell, Director of the Office of International Exchange Programs. Dr. Angell discussed general topics about the UAE and its culture. 

 MSU Delegates with Dr. Linda Angell

Visits from Peer Advisors

IXO was delighted to receive a visit from alumni Peer Advisor Sonia Soares, who studied abroad at Virginia Tech University several years ago, and worked for IXO upon her return until she graduated from AUS. After working in industry for a year or so, she has now started a graduate program at Eindhoven University in the Netherlands!

Left to Right: Mutaman Tariq (Peer Advisor), 
Dr. Linda Angell and Sonia Soares

Blast from the Past

IXO was visited recently by Julia McConnell, an incoming Fall 2015 student who studied abroad at AUS via our bilateral partnership with Louisiana State University. McConnell returned to the UAE to spend the holiday and New Year with her friends in the region. She is now engaged to Ahmad Al-Zuhairy, an AUS student she met during her semester abroad. We wish McConnell and Al-Zuhairy the best and happiness in their future endeavors.

                                                    Left to Right: Grace Morales (Advisor, IXO
                                                program), Julia McConnell and Ahmad Al-Zuhairy

Other recent visitors to IXO were exchange students Mikaela Boston, Lisa Sun and Ruthie Edd. Boston was an incoming student from the University of Minnesota, and studied abroad at AUS during Fall 2014 and Spring 2015, as did Edd who joined AUS from Fort Lewis College in Colorado. Sun was an incoming Spring 2015 student from Wake Forest University in North Carolina. The three IXO alumni recently travelled to Pakistan to attend a wedding, then spent time in the UAE. They even joined our IXO Day Out in Dubai on January 25 as part of our IXOrientation. The IXO team enjoys receiving visits from past students like this!

IXO Orientation - Spring 2017

IXO would like to welcome all the new incoming Spring 2017 students! IXO planned a specific orientation for these students so that they could learn about and understand the UAE culture. The nine-day orientation program included talks about culture and life in the UAE, and trips to museums both in Dubai and Sharjah, the Heart of Sharjah area, old souks in Dubai, malls and other local attractions. 

IXO’s 7th Anniversary!

The Office of International Exchange (IXO) recently celebrated its seventh anniversary as an office within AUS!  Since our establishment on January 2, 2010, we have sent 175 AUS students to study abroad in 51 US universities and 24 universities outside the US. These host universities include our 13 bilateral partners, plus a wide range of other top universities such as Harvard, Concordia, San Diego State, University of Utah, University of Virginia and McGill, among others. 

In addition, we have hosted 704 incoming students from 150 universities in the US and 37 universities in other countries. We have sent 922 AUS students on 71 international study tours to destinations all over the world, and welcomed 1,588 international visitors and 148 visiting scholars to AUS. 

We love our work, and feel so fortunate to be in a position to enable students to have this opportunity of a lifetime, and to share our beautiful and unique university with the rest of the world.

Welcome Back, and Happy New Year!

Welcome back to all members of the AUS community. We hope you had a Happy New Year and an enjoyable winter break, and wish you all the best for the Spring 2017 semester. As we welcome our new incoming students, we would also like to bid farewell to those AUS students departing to study abroad in Spring 2017. We look forward to hearing about their adventures upon their return at the end of the semester!

 Left to Right: Grace Morales (Advisor, IXO program),  
Rawan Afana (Peer Advisor), Mutaman Tariq 
(Peer Advisor) and Tariq AlSayed (Peer Advisor)
One of our favorite jobs in IXO is welcoming back AUS students who recently studied abroad. Some of the students who studied abroad in Fall 2016 visited the IXO office recently and discussed their experiences with advisors. To view these video interviews, visit our IXO Facebook page: