On Monday, May 16, 2016, the American University of Beirut Medical Center (AUBMC) inaugurated the newly renovated Nicholas George Saab Memorial Medical Library, in the presence of Saab Charitable Foundation board members and President, Mr. Issam Shammas, President Fadlo Khuri, EVP for Medicine and Global Strategy and Dean of the Faculty of Medicine, Dr. Mohamed H. Sayegh, and Associate Dean for Medical Education, Dr. Kamal Badr.
Incepted in 1867, Saab Memorial Medical Library (SML) has been a vital part of the AUB Libraries. At the beginning, its medical books and periodicals were physically housed at the University Library in the College Hall. In 1925, the Medical Library moved to the ground floor of Van Dyck building until finally, in 1975, it was relocated to its present premises, where it became known as the Saab Medical Library. The building itself was dedicated to the memory of the late Dr. Nicholas Saab after a generous gift from his parents.
SML supports the American University of Beirut (AUB) in accomplishing its mission in the medical education, advancing knowledge through research, and delivering quality healthcare and outstanding services to its community. As a partner of the AUB healthcare team, it houses the most reliable and up-to-date resources for medicine that assist in the practice of evidence-based medicine and provide professional services to users. It also offers community services through dissemination of expertise in health information skills.
In his opening speech, Dr. Badr welcomed the attendees and expressed the deep gratitude of the Faculty of Medicine (FM) to the Saab Foundation for their generous support of SML over more than four decades. He reflected on the transformative influence that this building, dedicated to medical education, has had on AUB and its health sciences community.
President Khuri thanked the Saab Foundation, the medical school dean, and the library team for giving the future generations the chance to participate in this magnificent ideal that was Nicholas Saab and his pursuit for knowledge and learning. “This is a remarkable testimony to the dedication of the wonderful Saab Foundation, our great Faculty of Medicine led by Dean/EVP Dr. Mohamed H. Sayegh and Associate Dean for Medical Education, Dr. Kamal Badr. It is also a significant moment in the final analysis of recognition for a remarkable individual and his family and that makes it particularly resonant with all of us,” he added.
Mr. Issam Shammas, Chairman of the Board, Saab Foundation said, “Indeed, such a contribution to a venerable institution like AUB remains a testament to the spirit of giving.” He added, “We are confident that the special relationship that we, the Saab Foundation, enjoy with AUB will become even stronger under the leadership of Dr. Khuri and the current administration.”
The Saab Memorial Medical Library has achieved and delivered the highest standards of best practice and has enhanced its status as one of the top academic medical libraries in Lebanon and the region. Accordingly, the World Health Organization (WHO) designated it as the National Focal Point Medical Library, in 1978. Nowadays, the Library serves as a gateway to international up-to-date electronic and print biomedical information.
A reception followed the ceremony.