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The ABPA Institute

posted on: Oct 26, 2022

The ABPA Institute
Photo: Institute Logo / Source:

By: Carrie Stewart / Arab America Content Contributor

There are Arab Americans all over the U.S. looking for jobs or internship opportunities. While many colleges have clubs and organizations that assist students in these areas, there are also other organizations that can help such as ABPA – a conduit formed to create opportunities that allow minority students to test drive their careers.

What is ABPA?

The ABPA Institute
Photo: ABPA’s Team / Source:

ABPA lists its mission as “ABPA Institute is a conduit to create opportunities that allow minority students to test drive their careers. We connect both Arab-American and all underserved minority students with employers in the public and private sectors. The employers ABPA partners with are committed to diversity and inclusion, and to offering meaningful internship opportunities to students.”

Regarding Demographics, the foundation supports students that are Arab-American: “which means they have origins in 22 nations ranging from the Middle East to North Africa. [They] do not distinguish them from Middle Eastern, which includes non-Arab countries like Turkey and Iran.”


The Arab-American Business and Professional Association (ABPA) was founded in 1985. It’s a non-profit organization, serving as a multi-way bridge between the U.S. and the Arab world. Its major goal is to provide a “platform to connect local and international investors with businesses, harnessing and steering the economic capacity of the Arab-American community locally, and enhancing the competencies of Arab-American professionals to be competitive in the local and global marketplace.”

However, since 2018, the Institute changed its focus to students and internship placement, with a focus on civil service. The institute has established a network of partners and students through programs including the Internship Placement Program and Student Ambassador Program. ABPA now focuses on providing numerous opportunities to support Arab-American students and their professional development.

The Founder

The ABPA Institute
Photo: Mr. Fuad M. Sahouri / Source:

The Founder and Executive Director of ABPA is Mr. Fuad M. Sahouri. He also is the President/Founder of Sahouri Insurance and Financial Services, a privately-held risk management insurance brokerage firm. Outside of his work in insurance, Fuad Sahouri has worked in activism – supporting Palestine, and the Arab American community. He was born and raised in Ramallah, Palestine. According to the ABPA website “Fuad’s passion to advance peace, dialogue, and improving the economic climate in the Palestinian territories led to his active engagement in US foreign policy in the Middle East.”


There are 4 major programs that the ABPA has. The first is the Internship Placement Program. It “places undergraduate, graduate, and recent graduate students of all majors into internships nationwide through our host employers. ” Next is the Mentorship Program. According to the website it is “offered to all ABPA students accepted into the Internship Placement Program. Under this program, students will be able to receive individualized mentorship on resume building, cover letter and writing sample feedback, interview skills coaching, and career-counseling opportunities that help students identify their ideal career path.” The third is Professional Development and Leadership Training. This is where students are able to explore and enhance their workplace skills. The last is scholarships, focused on relieving Arab American students of financial burdens.


The institute also hosts a variety of events. For example, on October 5th of this year, they hosted a live webinar with the state department. At this event, attendees were able to learn about State Department careers in the Washington D.C region as well as overseas in the U.S. embassies. You can register for these events on their website – The institute also has a newsletter posted on its website that you can check out!

Table at the Connect Summit

The ABPA Institute
Photo: ABPA tabling / Source:

ABPA will be tabling at Arab America’s Connect Summit (Nov 4-6). Aliya Qutub, at the foundation, let me know that by attending the CONNECT summit, they hope to connect with the university students so they are aware of our placements and to connect with the wonderful list of speakers.

Check out Arab Americas blog here!