At the heart of the great city of Alexandria in Egypt and at the intersection of Canopic Street and Pharos Street stood one of the most well-known public squares in the World. The Agora of Alexandria, which was only a few steps west of the Great Library of Alexandria, witnessed some of humanity’s most astute thinkers, teachers and philosophers, the formation of profound teachings and free speech. Carefully situated between the Roman quarters (west), the Hellenic quarters (east) and the Coptic quarters (north), the Agora of Alexandria has been regarded as the melting -pot of the ancient world.
Today, Agora University is a continuation of this indigenous Alexandrian heritage.
Agora University is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization aimed at raising the awareness of Orthodox Christian teachings though Patristic living, research and education.
Agora is Founded
Agora University was co-founded by Dr. Emmanuel Gergis and Rev. Fr. Michael Sorial in 2012 as a venue for engaging the Oriental Orthodox Christian tradition and the Humanities.
His Holiness Pope Tawadros II of the Coptic Orthodox Church and His Holiness Patriarch Ignatius Aphrem II Karim of the Syriac Orthodox Church granted their blessings for the Vision, Mission and activities of the University.
Agora began cooperation with the Alexandria School Journal publishing its first academic journal in English, and helped establish the Alexandria School Foundation in Egypt.
H.G. Bishop Epiphanius
In 2015, His Grace Bishop Epiphanius (of blessed memory) of the Monastery of St. Macarius in Scetis, Egypt became the President of the Advisory Board.
Mr. Naguib Sawiris
In 2016, Mr. Naguib Sawiris became the Chairman of the Boards of Agora University.
In 2019, Agora University's degree programs were fully accredited in the European Union.
The Executive Team
Statement of Faith
As an indigenous Orthodox Christian organization, our Statement of Faith is the Scripture-based Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed of 325 and 381 A.D. as follows:
We believe in one God, God the Father the Pantocrator who created heaven and earth, and all things seen and unseen. We believe in one Lord Jesus Christ, the Only-Begotten Son of God, begotten of the Father before all ages; Light of Light, true God of true God, begotten not created, of one essence with the Father, by whom all things were made; Who for us men and for our salvation came down from heaven, and was incarnate of the Holy Spirit and of the Virgin Mary and became Man. And He was crucified for us under Pontius Pilate, suffered and was buried. And on the third day He rose from the dead, according to the Scriptures, ascended to the heavens; He sits at the right hand of his Father, and He is coming again in His glory to judge the living and the dead, Whose kingdom shall have no end. Yes, we believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the Life-Giver, Who proceeds from the Father, Who with the Father and the Son is worshiped and glorified, who spoke by the prophets. And in one holy, catholic and apostolic Church. We confess one baptism for the remission of sins. We look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the coming age. Amen.
Agora University’s programs are fully accredited in the European Union through our collaboration and accreditation agreement with the Catholic University of Murcia, Spain.
Exemptions & Licensure
Agora University is a religious institution exempt from state regulation and oversight in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
Agora University (formerly St. Cyril Society) is exempt as a religious institution in the State of California, and operates under the Private Postsecondary Education Act of 2009, California Education Code (CEC) Section 94874 (e) of the Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education (BPPE).
Agora University is not required to obtain state authorization in Arizona since the university has no physical presence in Arizona as defined by A.R.S. § 32-3001(5).
Agora University is not required to be licensed by the Connecticut Department of Higher Education since the institution does not have a physical presence in Connecticut.
Agora University is not required to be licensed by the Illinois Department of Higher Education since the institution does not have a physical presence in Illinois.
Agora University is not required to be licensed by the Kansas Board of Regents since the institution does not have a physical presence in Kansas.
Agora University is not regulated by the Louisiana Board of Regents since it offers courses and programs fully online and does not maintain physical facilities in the State of Louisiana.
Agora University is not required to seek licensure with the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education to enroll residents of Massachusetts into online courses and programs.
Agora University is not required to seek licensure with the New Jersey Secretary of Higher Education to enroll residents of New Jersey into online courses and programs.
Agora University is not required to seek licensure with the Board of Governors of the University of North Carolina to enroll residents of North Carolina into online programs.
Agora University is not currently pursuing state authorization in other States and has no students who reside in those states.
Additionally, Agora in unable to accept applications for admissions from the states where it is not licensed or exempt.
Institutional Objectives and Outcomes
At Agora University, we aim to build well-rounded students by developing a well-balanced approach to Christian through:
- The Humanities — Being committed to shaping our curriculum and programs in the Humanities to ask the fundamental questions of human existence and to situate our knowledge in light of the Eastern Christian traditions and the Early Christian Wisdom.
- Our Eastern Christian Identity — the realization that the self-understanding of who we are and what we do is grounded and informed by what it means to be an Eastern Christian, being part of a dynamic tradition and a Church with deep and profound beliefs.
Our institutional objectives are:
- Provide quality distance education programs for graduate students in the Humanities from an Orthodox Christian perspective.
- Provide credentialed faculty members who have experience in teaching. Our goal is that at least 90 percent of our faculty have doctorates in their fields. Others with at least exceptional expertise in the courses they teach.
- Provide adequate administrative staff to facilitate coordination of student services, financial accountability, and technological support.
- Provide structured graduate-level programs in a semester-long format that is readily accessible in a flexible manner through technologically sound, cost-effective educational systems.
- Provide effective interactions between students and faculty, as measured by at least a 90 percent positive rating on our end-of semester survey. All student complaints will be investigated by the Dean within 14 days.
Guided by our Mission statement and through work at faculty meetings, Agora University identifies three major Institutional Learning Outcomes as guides to all of the work of teaching and learning, community-building, and spiritual formation that shape its presence in Church and society.
1. To establish a community of Christian thinkers,
2. To build students spiritually and academically, to develop in character,
3. To witness in the contemporary world.
• Theological knowledge: a coherent understanding and spiritual encounter of the Orthodox Christian theological tradition in light of Eastern Christian wisdom.
• Theological skills: the ability to reflect, analyze, synthesize, communicate, interpret, and apply that tradition in a religiously and culturally diverse world.
• To create a communal environment that nurtures collaboration, inspires an apostolic spirit, and supports the development of the spiritual life appropriate to work and ministry in a changing world.
• Leadership skills: the ability to interact with others in a spirit of openness and collaboration, to communicate effectively both orally and in writing.
• Spiritual maturity: an integration of affective and intellectual growth and commitment to the practice of spiritual disciplines, both personal and communal.
• To affirm the richness of intercultural diversity through the ways in which we foster community, construct our learning environments, and invite students, staff, and faculty to share their intercultural experiences and insights as a means of shaping students’ academic understanding, spiritual development, and pastoral practice.
• Intercultural communication: an ability to interact with persons of diverse cultures with empathy, mutuality, and respect
These broad goals arise out of the ways in which students and faculty, staff, and public partners participate in the school’s programs. Each of these, in turn, aligns with Program Learning Outcomes for degree programs, and Student Learning Outcomes in individual courses.