St. Shenouda The Archimandrite Coptic Society, Los Angeles


Promotion of Coptology at American Universities

Visiting Professorship in Coptic Studies at the School of Religion (SoR),

Claremont Graduate University (CGU), Starting 1 January 2007

$50,000 Fundraising Campaign for 2006



1.       To advance the prominence and visibility of Coptic Orthodox Christianity within the academic community in America and the world.
   SoR is one of the top ranking in USA. Other universities look up to CGU. Student body is international. CGU is famous for its Coptic studies from 1965-…

2.       To create opportunities for MA/PhD students (200 at SoR) to specialize in all branches of Coptic civilization: history, language, literature, art, art history, music, monasticism, architecture, archeology, theology, patristics, texts, Christian Arabic literature, daily life documents, Coptic role in political life, sociology, …
   If CGU produced so many books, PhD dissertations, and graduates in Coptic studies when it was focused on the Nag Hammadi Library alone; imagine if it expands into those numerous fields of Coptic studies. Graduates in Coptic studies will be ambassadors of Coptology worldwide.

3.       The Visiting Professorship will be a step toward establishing a permanent Chair, a Center for Coptic Studies at CGU and elsewhere, and MA/PhD programs in Coptic Studies.
   The publicity and visibility that will be generated can convince an admirer of Coptology to endow a chair at CGU, UCLA, Loyola Marymount, Chapman University, Catholic University of America, ...

4.       Universities in Southern California will emulate CGU and provide pieces of a giant program. Collaboration between CGU, UCLA, and St Shenouda Society has started.

5.       Coptic Youth will get excited about taking Coptology as a major, as a PhD topic, as a minor, or as elective. There is already evidence of that.


Let us seize the opportunity

1.       Gawdat Gabra: First Professor at AUC rotating Chair of Coptic Studies. Author, coauthor, editor, coeditor of about 10 volumes and 70 papers in German and English. Former Director of Coptic Museum. Can teach several courses in Coptology. Taught at CGU, Portland State University, AUC, and Egyptian universities.

2.       Other projects are on the list: A Supplement (and/or an update) of Coptic Encyclopedia.

3.       CGU is supportive and will apply for grants (from government and foundations) to support projects that the Visiting Professor may lead.

4.      Today’s success will enable future expansion toward the goal of an MA in Coptic Studies.


Please send contributions to: St Shenouda Society: 1701 S. Wooster St., LA, CA 90035.

Make check payable to: “St Shenouda Society.”  

For matched funds by your employer, make check payable to: “Claremont Graduate University.”

In both cases, write in Memo: “Coptic Visiting Professorship.”


Please feel free to contact Hany Takla ( or Saad Michael Saad ( for any question on the subject.