BYBLOS, Lebanon, April 28, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- The Lebanese American University (LAU) on Tuesday April 25, hosted a ceremonial groundbreaking for the "Antoun Nabil Sehnaoui – SGBL Athletics Center" on its Byblos campus. SGBL Chairman, Antoun Sehnaoui and LAU president Dr. Joseph Jabbra joined a host of political, economic, military, security, educational, athletic and media dignitaries, LAU executives, administrators, faculty and staff, and SGBL senior management. Dr. Jabbra and Mr. Sehnaoui then visited the location where the center will be built and laid the foundation stone.
The ceremony began with a parade of LAU student-athletes accompanied by a musical performance. Afterwards, LAU sports director Joe Moujaes welcomed the audience noting that "the dream is becoming reality today, shining the spotlight on the LAU name in the sport field locally and internationally."
LAU president Dr. Jabbra thanked Mr. Sehnaoui for his continuous support, and praised his quick responsiveness to this university project aimed at building a large multipurpose sports facility that will house LAU sporting activities as well the Jbeil community sporting activities.
"Mr. Sehnaoui is a great example of solid and smart Lebanese entrepreneur of dynamic innovative and creative character and broad vision that succeeds continually," Jabbra said. "Most importantly his strong belief in Lebanon and his national feeling are his strengths. He grew up during the civil war, where he gained experience and acquired the necessary skills to turn a negative situation into a positive one, and formed a visionary perspective in banking, tourism, real estate and press investment projects serving Lebanon as a country with all its diversities and components."
Dr. Jabbra announced that the 8,500 square meters athletics center, made possible by Sehnaoui's generous multi-million dollar donation will feature multiple sports facilities.
Before the ceremony, Sehnaoui said that SGBL has always supported sport because it brings together the Lebanese from all religions, sects and political parties.
"Sport has the power to create unity, solidarity and coexistence," Sehnaoui said. "It is an important and healthy solution to the political and social problems that divide Lebanon. Sport breaks the isolation imposed by society and breaks all barriers between people."
Sehnaoui added that he chose LAU because he believes in Dr. Jabbra's leadership and in LAU as a leading educational institution. He also noted that he chose a university that adopts the American education system which values academics and sports, such as his alma mater the University of California.
After his speech, Dr. Jabbra presented to Mr. Sehnaoui an LAU green sports jersey carrying the number 1 and five stars, as a symbol of the five university tournaments won by LAU – Byblos Campus.
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