Manama, Kingdom of Bahrain: The American University of Bahrain (AUBH), the first purpose-built American university in the Kingdom, is set to open its doors in September 2019; promising a fresh new approach in program delivery, infrastructure development, and significantly changing the landscape of higher education in-the country.

Built on a 75,000 square metre plot in the prestigious Riffa area, the AUBH campus is designed by the US-based global architects Ayers Saint Gross (ASG), who have designed a number of renowned US university campuses. The new AUBH campus will feature modern classrooms and labs, as well as a state-of-the-art auditorium, student commons, and athletic facilities, all of which will encourage and foster interaction and collaboration between students, faculty and the professional community, providing an educational experience unique to the Middle East.  

AUBH has received institutional approval by the Higher Education Council (HEC) of the Ministry of Education in the Kingdom of Bahrain and plans to launch its schools of Engineering, Architecture and Design, and Business in the 2019-2020 academic year. Strong emphasis on graduate outcomes and employability will be key differentiators of the new university which aims to offer world-class higher education opportunities in a rapidly evolving Bahrain and the wider Middle East region.

The AUBH Board proudly selected Dr. Susan E. Saxton, an internationally experienced executive to lead AUBH as founding President. Dr. Saxton is recognized for building business capability and transforming institutions into operational success stories. Influenced heavily by achievements in competitive athletics, Dr. Saxton’s leadership, self-discipline, rigor, and focus were consolidated early in her career and played a key role in her rise to that of an upper echelon internationally recognized senior executive uniquely experienced and credentialed in both business and academia.

On the creation of this greenfield first-of-its-kind university in Bahrain, Dr. Saxton, said: “We are very confident in the academic prospects of the Kingdom and look forward to the American University of Bahrain solidifying the country’s position as an education hub in the GCC and wider Arab region.” 

“Higher education plays an integral part in advancing economies by addressing the skills needed for the next generation of workforce. The American University of Bahrain will provide the necessary academia to support the Kingdom’s 2030 vision while enriching students with a holistic university experience,” she added.

“Students enrolling in AUBH will be exposed to a university life that is very much influenced by collaborative learning, critical thinking and technical education in an American style university environment. Beyond the academic education that the students will receive, they will receive mentorship in soft skills and competencies including problem solving, negotiation and creative thinking with the purpose of empowering the next generation with the confidence, leadership and professionalism skills required in the workforce. They will also be able to experience social, athletic and other extra-curricular activities making AUBH home,” added Dr. Saxton.

Prior to joining AUBH, Dr. Saxton was the Chief Executive Officer, Int. and SVP Innovation and Emerging Strategies for the University of St. Augustine, a Laureate Education institution; Chief Strategy & Development Officer for the International Baccalaureate Organization in The Hague; and Chief Strategy Officer, Chief Academic Officer, and Senior Vice President for Laureate Education Inc. Global Products and Services Division. Dr. Saxton holds two Ph.D.’s in Business and Human Services, as well as a Master of Laws (LLM) from the University of Liverpool in the UK, Masters of Science in Business Administration (MSBA) and Boston University and a BA from Wellesley College in the USA.

Further details about the admission to the university and information related to the curriculums will be released at a later stage.


About The American University of Bahrain (AUBH):

AUBH is the first American-style, co-educational campus in Bahrain, providing high quality education in a stunning, purpose-built campus. With a carefully planned rollout across traditional to the leading edge studies, the university will initially offer Business, Engineering, and Architecture and Design programs.

The mission of the University is to help students to become successful professionals in the workforce who not only have technical competencies and expertise for their careers, but also embody the critical thinking, creativity, and problem-solving skills that are necessary to excel as contributing members of their communities and societies.

The brand new AUBH campus is located in Riffa, Bahrain. In addition to its magnificent and open structures, AUBH Incorporates innovative and ergonomic design in its education and social spaces, enhancing the learning and developmental experience for each student. Along with the classrooms, library and labs, the campus includes a workout center, indoor and outdoor courts and fields, a vast student commons, and an auditorium for special events. 

For more information, please contact

Shaikha Seyadi
Tel: +973 17 592008 Ext. 101 | M: +973 66395500

© Press Release 2019

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