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University of Balamand > Spotlights > Assoc. Prof. Melki - IT in Service of Mankind


Assoc. Prof. Melki

IT in Service of Mankind

Associate Professor of Computer Science, Father Antoine Melki joined the University of Balamand in 1990. Along with being the current coordinator of the Instructional Technology Unit, Father Melki is also the coordinator of Ma3bar (the Arab center for the Support of Open Source Software). He is also a member of the Academic Committee for the LFE association (Lebanon for Entrepreneurship), an organization that links Lebanese entrepreneurs with the Lebanese diaspora. 

Father Melki began his journey at UOB as an IT director, an acting registrar, as well as an athletics coordinator. Four years later, he joined the Faculty of Sciences. He believes that working in the administration is an “enriching experience that should be molded into teaching.”

After completing his Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Mathematics at the Lebanese American University in 1985, he continued his education by pursuing his pre-doctoral studies in 1990. In 2001, he obtained his doctorate degree in Information Systems from the University of Patras in Greece. 

Prior to joining the UOB family, Father Melki worked as an engineer in Athens as well as in Dubai. 

Coordinator of the Instructional Technology Unit (ITU) at the University of Balamand, Father Melki explains that the mission of this unit is to support educational excellence, foster programmatic innovation, simplify educational scholarship, and improve educational leadership skills through the equable deployment of instructional technology. 

Father Melki argues that the mission of the ITU is to transform UOB into a smart campus. “To achieve this,” says Melki, “we need smart users and to emphasize professional development. The ITU second axis is to promote e-learning and professional development. All our faculty members should be power users and should rely on the latest technologies to provide teaching”.

Father Melki further explains that the ITU Unit is multidisciplinary in nature, activity, and deliverables. It combines education, service and scholarship. 

Part of Father Melki’s responsibility as an ITU coordinator is having first-hand involvement in a series of projects. These projects include research in computer technology acceptance and usage at the University of Balamand. Another endeavor Father Melki is participating in is the “gamification use in teaching cyber security.”

Largely engaged in research on computing education, Father Melki recently published a number of articles on the Proprietary versus Open Source Software in Support of Learning, in the proceedings of the Federated Conference on Computer Science and Information Systems (FedCSIS), which are organized by the International Federation for Information Processing (IFIP) and the European Alliance for Innovation (EAI) at Warsaw University of Technology, on September 2014. 

He also published another paper on FLOSS Contribution in the Development of Entrepreneurial Computing Curriculum, in the proceedings of the 8th International Conference New Horizons in Industry, Business and Education (NHIBE 2013), 29 - 30 August 2013 Crete Island, Greece.

Being a founding member of the Arab Observatory for Cyber Security (AOCS), Father Melki says that creating a secure cyber ecosystem lacks two things in Lebanon: Education and Regulations. Awareness should cover school curricula and the community, he urges. Furthermore, he adds that we need a technical framework in Lebanon, and a body that takes care of cyber security.

In addition to his responsibilities as a coordinator of ITU, Father Melki teaches courses on information systems management, information policies, and emerging technologies.

In his capacity as a coordinator of Ma3bar, Father Melki is dedicated to the promotion of the use of “Open Source” software that users can manipulate and distribute freely. He argues that Open Source is a tool for better learning. He believes that computers are in the service of humans, and information systems are humanized computer systems. 

Father Melki’s educational interests are not limited to Computer Science. As an ordained priest, he has focused some of his research on various aspects of Orthodox theology. He founded the Orthodox Legacy Online Journal, which is the only online journal of Orthodox theology in Arabic.​​

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University of Balamand,
Balamand Al Kurah,
Lebanon

Tel:  +961-6-930250
Fax: +961-6-930278