ADA University has gone through a remarkable growth since its inception. We started as a training institute with just Advanced Foreign Service Program in 2007. Hence, our name: Azerbaijan Diplomatic Academy. But fast we grew into several schools offering both graduate and undergraduate degree programs.
We intend to build on this foundation of success. For the next five years, our strategic plan will focus on five key areas: further development of student centered model of education, people development, program expansion, library and infrastructure development, and sustainable growth.
Student Centered Education
We believe today’s education is not just about building academic strengths, but also developing skills and citizenship. ADA University is a culture of collaboration, teamwork, initiative, analytical thinking, critical reasoning, strategic planning and responsible citizenship. At ADA University, we cover all four components of a student-life cycle: admissions, curriculum, and career management and alumni relations. We have developed our own admission criteria which are not based on academic records and test scores only. We seek and develop individuals of diversity, unique backgrounds and interests, potential for growth, determination to succeed. And once they join ADA University, we work hard to enhance the experience of our students. At ADA University, we are building a world-class Career Management Center. Our students graduate from ADA University, but we remain together for many years through our Alumni Relations Office.
Our success is based on the strengths of our outstanding faculty and able administrators. Cultivating new faculty members and enhancing their international reputation is a top priority of ours. At ADA University, faculty initiated research gets generously funded and faculty enjoy travel allowances to attend and present at internationally recognized academic conferences. ADA Library provides every possible resource to meet the research needs of our faculty. As a result, we have managed to attract many young and talented Azerbaijani PhDs to return to Azerbaijan and teach at ADA. Looking forward, we have also launched a PhD Development and Support Program. This program supports Azerbaijani citizens studying at PhD programs outside the country by providing them with research grants and conference allowances. To cultivate our own faculty, we also offer scholarships to study at PhD programs. In a not so distant future, we intend to grow the number of our core faculty and help them gain both international network and recognition.
In 2007, we started with the Advanced Foreign Service Program (AFSP) because there was an urgent need to train Foreign Service officers and civil servants.
In 2009, we launched our Master of Arts in Diplomacy and International Affairs (MADIA). We, then, started admission to our four-year undergraduate programs. Taught in English, we have designed our undergraduate programs as a hybrid of general and specialized education. Spread over two years, the general education component provides a breadth of knowledge across social sciences, humanities, science and technology, mathematics and quantitative reasoning, arts and culture, academic writing, as well as leadership training.
As of 2011, our School of International Affairs added a new undergraduate program, called the Bachelor of Arts in International Studies (BAIS). As of 2013, we will add public affairs into a roster of programs. Hence, it has become School of Public and International Affairs.
In 2011, we expanded our programs into a field of Business Administration as well by launching Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA). This laid foundations for emergence of a School of Business, which, in 2013, expands into Master of Business Administration (MBA).
Over a long run, we intend to launch a variety of fields of study. Currently, ADA University is composed of four schools: School of Public and International Affairs, School of Business and School of Humanities and Sciences, and School of Engineering and Information Technologies.
Library and Infrastructure Development
As of September 2012, we have moved into our new “green” and “smart” campus, the first of its kind in the region. While being operated by alternative renewable sources of energy, this unique campus houses intelligent buildings, which integrate building and educational services. The ADA Library, which stands four floors tall, is a landmark of our campus. This repository of knowledge holds over 120,000 volumes and will eventually expand into a digital library.
Schools are built in perpetuity. Building a permanent endowment fund will be a key factor to ensuring our sustainable growth. It will help us to gain financial autonomy and maintain steady growth across fundamental areas such as faculty, research and library development. ADA Foundation (www.adafund.org
) is an endowment building arm of the school with offices in Azerbaijan and the United States of America.