Tuesday, May 24, 2011


I am pleased to announce that I have accepted a position at the American University of Nigeria, where I will be teaching starting in August. A satellite campus of the American University in Yola, it was founded about 6 years ago. I visited there last week to get a feeling for the campus and witness their third commencement exercises.

I've seen a sketch of what AUN is going to look like, and it's pretty nice: 20 main campus buildings, bunch of dorms and other facilities. Some people look at it and think it's already there. When they get there, they ask, "Where's the rest of it?"

Above is the building with most of the teachers and classrooms. I'll be on the second floor.

Across the way from it is what I'll call the administration building. The library takes up the left half of the bottom floor and there are other admin offices throughout it, but the President's office is in the other building. HR, finance, and other offices are across the street mingled with the international school.

That's about it so far.

There are dorms to house the ~1300 students. There's a cafeteria and a vehicle maintenance shop for the fleet of AUN shuttles to take me to work.

They are building a new library. From one day to the next I could see progress being made on it. I think the next one they are building after this is the real admin building. Each of these will then free up more space in the building I've called the admin building for teachers and classrooms. According to the sketch, both the buildings that are currently up are for classrooms.

Speaking of classrooms, here is one. The current department chair was teaching a review session during the 5/6 week summer term. I was surprised how relieved I am to discover just how casual their business casual is. Here I've been ramping up my wardrobe, getting more suit coats and preparing to wear a tie to work everyday and now ... I can wear my Hawaiian shirts to work!

One last look at my future office on the way out. There's this really long driveway to get the gate, another indication of the big plans the Founder (former Nigerian vice-president) and American University have for the campus they hope will become the greatest university in Sub-Saharan Africa.

I am very excited to begin working at AUN. My wife and I will be starting up a new blog about family life there because there are relatively few resources to help expats know how to integrate there. Some of those posts will also be posted here. Among the things you can expect is that this blog will have a good deal more news about and from Nigeria as a result.

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