American University of Beirut – Mediterraneo: BA in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics

​“We’re very excited to be offer​ing this program at the American University of Beirut – Mediterraneo,” says Philosophy Professor Bashshar Haydar, “and hope that we will soon be able to offer it at the American University of Beirut (AUB) in Beirut as well.” ​

The BA program in philosophy, politics, and economics (PPE) is one of five undergraduate degree programs that will be offered at AUB Mediterraneo beginning in fall 2023. It offers a multidisciplinary approach to social, economic, and political issues and challenges facing our contemporary world. It will also encourage students to link what they are learning in the classroom to the world around them. “The PPE program at AUB Mediterraneo is well situated for Cyprus,” explains Assistant Professor Nikolas Kosmatopoulos, “an interdisciplinary program in which diverse scientific fields and methodologies meet and converse in a place where northern and southern politics meet, a place where western and eastern theories can coalesce. It is a perfect environment in which to offer this program.” 

PPE students will begin by taking gateway courses that provide a brief introduction to all three disciplines and provide a strong foundation for the bridging courses that have been designed specifically for the major such as Economic Justice; Ethics and Public Affairs; and Conflict, Peace, and Justice. Associate Professor Ramzi Mabsout explains that in all PPE courses, students will be encouraged to look at issues through multiple lenses. “The more lenses you look through, the more you see – and the more you appreciate that there is always more than one way to look at any issue,” he says. PPE students will also receive extensive training in quantitative and qualitative methods – in how to conduct surveys, focus groups, and interviews and how to work with data as well – all essential skills for a wide range of careers. 

Like all undergraduate students at AUB Mediterraneo, PPE students will be required to take general education courses outside their major, focused on “understanding our cultures and histories, the scientific investigation of the world around us, and analyzing our changing societies in addition to courses focused on ethics and civic engagement,” explains David Currell, chair of the Department of English. Bana Bashour, director of the General Education Program at AUB adds, “General education courses are at the heart of the AUB experience that our students in Beirut enjoy and that we look forward to offering in Pafos.” 

Another attraction of all undergraduate degree programs at AUB Mediterraneo is the chance to participate in a three-week orientation and induction program at the start of the first year, which will provide students with “the tools they need so they can take full advantage of all the opportunities that they will enjoy.” Dr. Wassim El-Hajj, the executive director of the American University of Beirut – Mediterraneo project, goes on to note that the three-week program will introduce students to the goals and approaches of a liberal arts education and also serve as a practical orientation to AUB Mediterraneo.

The PPE program is a good choice for students interested in going on to do graduate studies in various disciplines such as development studies, economics, politics, and moral/political philosophy or to pursue careers in public service, international organizations, and business.