DAI Becomes Corporate Founder of American University of Mongolia

February 04, 2013

DAI today announced that it has become a corporate founder of the American University of Mongolia (AUM), joining Newcom LLC, Rio Tinto PLC, and the General Electric Foundation in supporting the university’s development.

“We are delighted to make this contribution,” said DAI president and CEO James Boomgard. “DAI has been working to make a difference in Mongolia for more than 20 years and we want to be part of Mongolia’s bright future. Making a lasting investment in its young people is one way we can do that.”

AUM was founded by a group of Mongolian and American business, educational, and community leaders to bring the best traditions of American higher education to serve the changing needs of students in Mongolia. AUM will be an independent, non-profit liberal arts university modeled after successful universities in the United States and will be accredited by U.S. and Mongolian accreditation bodies.

“It is exciting to welcome DAI to our group of corporate founders,” said AUM chairman J. Peter Morrow. “DAI came to Mongolia in 1993 as the American Government’s main economic development contractor and played a significant part in Mongolia’s conversion to a market economy. They are perhaps best known for their role in managing and investing in Khan Bank over the last decade.

AUM Chairman J. Peter Morrow

“On a personal note,” continued Morrow, “DAI brought me to Mongolia in 2000 as head of the Khan Bank turnaround team. I’m still here, and now, in this new role, so are they. In joining as a Founder they will be a permanent part of AUM’s and Mongolia’s growth and development.”

DAI’s unbroken engagement in Mongolia dates back to the early 1990s and proceeded through various assignments for clients such the U.S. Agency for International Development, the Asian Development Bank, and the World Bank, culminating in the successful turnaround of the Agricultural Bank, now known as Khan Bank. In winding down its holding in the bank, DAI selected AUM as the best vehicle for marking the firm’s ongoing commitment to development in Mongolia, in line with a community engagement program that focuses on supporting young people in countries where DAI works.

In the fall of 2014, the first students will be accepted into AUM’s four-year undergraduate program. Degree programs in engineering, business administration, and natural sciences will be the first priorities, followed by additional programs that will be developed at the masters and doctoral levels. AUM will eventually become a full-fledged research university that will stand as a center of excellence for the entire region.

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