Background and History of AUM
In October 2007, the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science of Mongolia (MECS) submitted a Grant Proposal to the U.S. Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) requesting funding for a feasibility study for the American University of Mongolia. The project sponsor for the proposal was Dr. Regsuren Bat-Erdene, Director, Vocational and Higher Education Department, MECS. USTDA declined to fund the proposal at that time and it was shelved for future reference.
In early 2010, Mr. Michael Ussury, former U.S. Ambassador to Morocco and current president, Council for American Universities Abroad (CAUA), approached American businessmen with long histories of working in Mongolia to inquire about reviving interest in establishing an American University in Mongolia. One of the businessmen, J. Peter Morrow, was stepping down as CEO of Khan Bank to take a position with Newcom LLC, a diversified Mongolian corporation with operations in information technology, aviation, construction and mining equipment, and renewable energy.
Mr. Morrow spent several weeks meeting and communicating with local and international sources with insight into the educational landscape in Mongolia to determine the need for and interest in creating a new university here. There was strong agreement on the need for an institution of higher education that would set a new international standard for the country, as well as many expressions of support for the initiative. Mr. Morrow introduced the project to the board of directors ofNewcom LLC and they agreed to provide the funding to help develop the American University in Mongolia (AUM).
In addition, ten individuals agreed to become founders and board members and nominated Mr. Morrow as Chairman of the Board. Dr. R. Baterdene accepted Newcom’s offer and joined the company to lead the project as the executive director.
The first element of the new university to be created was the Center for Executive Education (CEE). It conducted its first program, “Strategic Thinking and Management” in August 2011 inpartnership with the University of California Berkeley Haas School of Business. Sixty-three participants attended this first course offering.