This is the first report of a series of reports that Student Eye has prepared on the financial problem of the American University of Iraq-Sulaimani.
The American University of Iraq-Sulaimani as an academic institution with a large foreign faculty and staff has surely different criteria for salaries and payments from another Iraqi institution.
However, AUI-S is not an American institution, but it is an Iraqi institution with an American education style.
AUI-S admits to this fact by saying, "The American model of higher of education is easily distinguished from other models by its comprehensive, broad and liberal education that is much more than professional training."
As we see there, there is no sense of AUI-S's being formally an American university.
In fact, the American University at the United States of America had attempted to buy AUI-S and make it one of its many branches in the world, but with no results.
American congress is only one of the many parties that support AUI-S financially. Almost all the Iraqi political leadership is giving aids in a way or another to AUI-S.
Dr. Barham Salih, the Chairman of the Board of Trustees, has said that he searches all the times to find new sources of money for AUI-S.
So the word "American" is no way an indication of AUI-S's being an "American" university. It is more of a style, a philosophy and academic leadership than a formal relationship.
AUI-S, however, has a totally different system of salaries.
The American faculty and staff are getting imaginary salaries compared to what a university professor might get here in Iraq.
A lecturer at AUI-S typically gets a salary of $4000-$5000; this is without the housing and transportation benefits.
A professor at AUI-S typically gets a salary between $8000-$12,000, this doesn't include the housing and transportation benefits.
These numbers are even larger than what an average American lecturer or professor gets back in US.
This is not to suggest that professors and lecturers shouldn't get what they deserve. This is an attempt to regulate this topic which has been messy in the past.
AUI-S has 220 employees.
25 of this number are teaching in the academic program. If an average academic teacher got $7000, the total number will be $175,000.
22 of this 220 are teaching in the EWPLI program. If an average EWPLI teacher got a salary of $3000, that is $66000.
The rest of the employees have a salary ranging from $600-$2000. If an average employee got a salary of $1,000, that is $170,000.
So AUI-S spends more than $400,000 on salaries. That is a big number for a small and young university.
Of course we have not included the housing and transportation benefits which make the number even bigger.
AUI-S is located in one of the safest places of Iraq. It is much safer than most of the U.S. cities, Dr. John Agresto, the former provost has admitted.
So coming to Iraq is not a big adventure, as it is perceived now. This fact should be clear enough, for those who are here, at least.
If an American professor costs AUI-S this much, then we should look for an Iraqi or even a Middle Eastern professor with higher qualities who is ready to teach for a less money.