Fit and Focused: Second Annual President’s Run at AUBH

Dr. Susan E. Saxton, Founding President of American University of Bahrain (AUBH), led the second annual President’s Run on November 25th as a socially-distanced relay race through the state-of-the-art 75,000 square meter Riffa campus, including the largest canopy in Bahrain, the colored water features, academic quad, auditorium, sports center, student commons, and outdoor soccer field. Joining in the annual Run were Dr. Shaikh Sager bin Salman Al Khalifa, the Assistant Undersecretary for Youth Centers and Commission at the Ministry of Youth & Sports Affairs, and Dr. Saxton’s running colleague Mr. Emad Almoayed, Businessman, Past President of the Bahrain Society of Engineers and Past Governor of the Rotary Club. Faculty members, AUBH staff, parents, and supporters cheered the runners both on-campus and online, during the University’s first hybrid sports event of the academic year. Inaugurated last year by the AUBH Class of 2023, yesterday’s President’s Run included students from both Classes of 2023 and 2024 together for this health-conscious event.

An integral part of AUBH’s mission is an American-style holistic experience which includes maintaining work-school-life balance with a sound mind and sound body, and also feeling the spirit, teamwork, and the thrill of competition—along with the dedication and commitment to high performance that may lead to success in education and employment, and a long, prosperous and joyful life.

Dr. Saxton recalls: “My dedication to sports at an early age was a major factor in my growth and development as a professional, leader and team player. Every morning at 5 am, our city’s school Superintendent opened up our high school gym and worked out alongside all of the dedicated athletes. At the time, perhaps none of us realized how important this leadership would be in our future—in our strength and resilience—and how we would come to model this incredible gift of mentorship and leadership. Especially in these challenging times, we must be formidable and strong in all of our endeavors, finding extraordinary energy to perform at top levels in all areas of our lives. That said, the absolute best part of my job is spending time with AUBH students, something that I don’t get to do so much these days. This Run is a wonderful celebration of camaraderie, and a bonding experience for all participants regardless of how fast or far they can run. Fortunately, we are able to participate safely in this event, supporting a strong, vibrant academic and athletic community at American University of Bahrain.”

This year’s virtual spectators were able to view the race virtually through seven cameras positioned at key points along the route. The participants were able to see the spectators through large screens placed at the starting and finishing points. Instead of handing off the traditional batons, laps were drawn carefully on the ground to avoid any close contact by participants. Socially distanced and responsible, this event was a highlight of the academic year for many students, who are excited to have returned to campus in September. We want to thank our special guests and all participants for #showingup for AUBH’s second annual President’s Run.