November 17, 2011

SABIS® celebrates 125 years and counting

SABIS® Hosts 125th Gala Dinner and 15th Annual Directors' Meeting

SABIS® Board Members Participate in a Cake-Cutting Ceremony
Over the past year, SABIS® students, staff, and supporters have been engaged in 125th anniversary celebrations around the world. These celebrations have honored the organization’s ongoing contribution to the field of education for more than a century. With the new academic year already here and SABIS®’s 125th year winding down, the organization took the opportunity to host a final, large-scale event to celebrate its rich past and promising future.

Fittingly, SABIS® hosted a grand gala dinner in Lebanon on July 7, 2011, which gathered more than 800 guests including government ministers, partners, SABIS® team members, alumni, and supporters. A SABIS® team member commented, “I was amazed with the turnout...guests from around the world—the U.S., Germany, Pakistan and the U.A.E.—were there to celebrate SABIS®’s milestone. It was an unforgettable night that has inspired us to continue making a difference worldwide.”

The gala event was carefully planned and began with the showing of a documentary film that highlighted SABIS®’s history, global expansion, achievements, technological advancements, and vision for the future. The documentary was followed by several speeches, including one from ISC-Choueifat alumnus and distinguished scholar at UCLA, Dr. Ali H. Sayed, who spoke in depth about his time at the mother school as well as SABIS®’s evolution during the past 125 years. “The world changed in the last 125 years in unimaginable ways. Yet, since its inception, the school has continuously succeeded in training bright students of all ages to serve their societies in commendable ways. Given its rich history and the breadth, depth, and range of its contribution to society, the Choueifat school should come close to being considered a national treasure,” stated Dr. Sayed.

Mr. Ralph Bistany receives the National Order of Cedar-Commander
An especially memorable highlight of the evening came when Mr. Fadi Abboud, Lebanese Minister of Tourism and SABIS® alumnus, delivered a moving speech about his experience as an ISC-Choueifat student and the fond memories he cherishes. He went on to thank SABIS® Cofounders Mrs. Leila Saad and Mr. Ralph A. Bistany for their efforts to raise the standard of education. Taking the audience by surprise, Mr. Abboud spoke on behalf of the president of Lebanon, “I started my speech talking to you as an ex-student; I will continue to address you in my capacity as the official representative of the President of the Lebanese Republic, General Michel Suleiman.” In this capacity, he decorated Mr. R. Bistany with the National Order of the Cedar-Commander Grade for his significant contribution to the field of education.

Among the gala attendees were school directors and key team members from across the SABIS® School Network who were in Lebanon participating in the 15th Annual Directors’ Meeting. The Directors’ Meeting provided participants with a platform to review and assess the past academic year, plan future strategies, and reaffirm the SABIS® philosophy within the network. Specifically, during the four-day conference, meeting attendees discussed operational challenges and determined objectives for the next academic year. Additionally, the most recent SABIS® technological breakthroughs were demonstrated and workshops conducted.

As the 125th anniversary year enters the countdown to its close in October 2011, the gala dinner is sure to be fondly remembered in the minds and hearts of all who attended.


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