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For Immediate Release
31 August 2012

Bethlehem University Students Win Regional First Place in Google Online Marketing Challenge 

Google’s Social Media Award category in competition for the first time

Bethlehem, Palestine – For the second consecutive year, Bethlehem University has received a top regional award in the Google Online Marketing Challenge. This is the first year Google has offered a competition specifically for Social Media Marketing, with the regional (Middle East and Africa) winning team hailing from Bethlehem University. 

The winning team from Bethlehem University was comprised of six students: Zaid Hilal, Hiba Stephan, Bishara Hodaly, Orianna Salameh, Amir Salameh, and Dina Massad, under the supervision of their advisor, Ms. Nadira Alaraj, lecturer of e-commerce in Bethlehem University's Shucri Ibrahim Dabdoub Faculty of Business Administration. The team developed the marketing project for Al-Harah Theater Institution in nearby Beit Jala, which produces and distributes quality and meaningful theater material, and trains theater staff.

This is the fifth year of the Google Online Marketing Challenge, which focuses on marketing via the Google search engine by using the AdWords technique. To choose the winner of the Social Media Marketing category, the team first had to qualify as superior in the first phase. The team then had to qualify as competent in the following strategy application. The interaction by the Google+ page with the Hara Theatre page required the team to utilize and optical technique conversation (termed "Hangout") using small groups from the theatre pioneers and linking this page with the theatre website page.

The winning team was chosen based on a special computer program that selects the best 15 strategies from four different geographical areas in the Middle East and Africa, and a global academic panel evaluated the reports of the final teams in each region. For this year's competition, three different groups of Ms. Alaraj's students qualified at this stage. 

Bethlehem University is proud of the continued successes of these teams on an international level in the prestigious Google Online Marketing Challenges, and grateful for the commitment and guidance of excellent educators, as evidenced by Ms. Alaraj's involvement with so many successful teams from Bethlehem University.

Click here for an article about last year's award.

Click here for a feature about this in Palestine News Network.

Providing quality higher education to the people of Palestine, Bethlehem University is the first university established in the West Bank. Serving as a center for the advancement, sharing, and use of knowledge, Bethlehem University traces its roots to 1893 when the De La Salle Christian Brothers opened schools in Bethlehem, Jerusalem, Jaffa, Nazareth, Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, and Egypt. Emphasizing excellence in academic programs and the development of students as committed people to assume leading positions in society, Bethlehem University was founded in 1973 through the joint efforts of Palestinian educators, community leaders, the Vatican and the international Catholic religious order of the De La Salle Christian Brothers. A founding member of the Palestinian Council for Higher Education, Bethlehem University is a member of the Association of Arab Universities, International Federation of Catholic Universities, and the Lasallian Association of Colleges and Universities. As a Catholic Christian co-educational institution of higher learning welcoming students of all faith traditions, Bethlehem University aspires to fostering shared values, moral principles and dedication to serving the common good among more than 3,000 students in undergraduate and post-graduate master degree and diploma programs in the Arts, Business Administration, Education, Nursing, Science, and Institute of Hotel Management and Tourism as well as with continuing education and professional diploma students in the Institute for Community Partnership.

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George N. Rishmawi

George N. Rishmawi
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