Recipients of the Armenian Educational Foundation Scholarship at AUA
Since 2006, the Armenian Educational Foundation (AEF) has been partnering with the American University of Armenia (AUA), providing a total of $125,579 in scholarship support to 96 AUA students. Below are a handful of the Armenian Educational Foundation Scholarship recipients at AUA this academic year:
Anna Manucharyan is from Aknaghbyur village of the Askeran region in Artsakh. She moved to Stepanakert with her family after their village came under Azerbaijani control as a result of the 2020 Artsakh War.
She applied to major in computer science at the American University of Armenia (AUA) due to her love for math and curiosity to explore new directions in the field.
With prior experience as an android developer at Yeram, Anna is currently a volunteer with the Lend a Hand NGO, which provides free courses and training for Artsakh refugees. “AUA provides leadership and teamworking skills, which help me in my work. I also volunteered at Tech Week Artsakh 2021, which was a great experience for me.”
Recently, Anna took part in the workshop led by Dr. Areg Danagoulian, nuclear physicist and associate professor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). During the workshop, the participants built a geiger counter, a tool for detecting and measuring radiation. Anna notes that this experience inspired her to pursue a master’s degree in engineering. “I hope to specialize in aerospace engineering, which will be very beneficial for Armenia. I would love to stay in Artsakh and do my best to develop it. Without this experience at AUA, I wouldn’t have been able to find my passion in engineering. I’m very grateful to the Armenian Educational Foundation for giving me the opportunity to try myself in different fields.”
Hakob Janesian is a second-year student majoring in Data Science at the American University of Armenia (AUA). He chose to pursue this course of study at AUA given his skills in English and math, as well as the fast-growing demand for qualified specialists in Armenia.
After fighting in the 2020 Artsakh War, Hakob returned to AUA. He notes that the support from AUA staff and faculty significantly helped him along this journey.
Hakob is determined to focus on his studies and gain new opportunities in a wide range of areas. He wants to explore machine learning and become part of companies such as PicsArt, Krisp, or SmartClick. “I think the quality of education is one of the most important factors at AUA. We have enthusiastic instructors who do their best to support you,” says Hakob. “I believe that every person who works hard and tries to beat yesterday's limit is already making an impact on Armenia. The first step to achieve this work ethic is education; it’s about showing the same determination in academia.”
Hakob is appreciative of the support from the Armenian Educational Foundation, as he believes that education is the best field in which one can invest. “I was very grateful to become acquainted with an organization that understands the importance of my service to my country.”
Monika Ghavalyan is a freshman majoring in Data Science at the American University of Armenia (AUA). “Data Science spans wider areas in programming, math, and statistics. It’s a profession of the future in high demand. I truly hope that my education will help me make an impact in the future,” says Monika.
As a new member of the AUA community, Monika felt herself at home among the motivated students and resources at the University which support her studies.
To receive practical experience in the field, Monika has applied to work at Digitain Armenia. Aside from academics, Monika aims to become an active member of the student body and start her own intellectual game club at AUA to give students the opportunity to focus on more than their education. “When I received the email informing me about my scholarship from the Armenian Educational Foundation, I was shocked and excited,” she says. “It contributed to my education and ability to be here right now. I want to work hard to be worthy of this opportunity. I can’t wait for this exciting journey ahead.”
Gor Ghazaryan is from Dilijan, Tavush region. He is a first-year business student at the American University of Armenia (AUA).
Fascinated about entrepreneurship, Gor decided to pursue a business major with the aim of eventually establishing his own company to bring innovation and creativity to his community. In the near future, Gor wants to apply to AUA Entrepreneurship and Product Innovation Center (EPIC) with his business plan. He aims to create an apparel company which will present the new generation of Armenian youth from different perspectives and spark a movement for education, as well as mental and physical health awareness. The apparel company will offer merchandise representing these broader ideas.
Prior to returning to his education at AUA, Gor faced many challenges. On the 17th day of the 2020 Artsakh War, he was wounded and spent three months at the hospital. After six surgeries on his arm and leg followed by a lengthy rehabilitation process, he was finally able to walk again. “AUA certainly helped me throughout this journey,” says Gor. “I felt the welcoming nature of AUA from the professors and the overall environment. The University counselors organized a trip to Aghveran. I had an amazing time there and got to make new friends. It helped me form a bond with AUA. Our University has a very supportive environment, and I am happy to be part of it.”
After graduation, Gor wants to apply for a master's degree in entrepreneurship to gain the knowledge and network essential for creating a startup. He aims to establish an educational center in the regions to provide courses and resources which will help students apply to their desired universities. “I can never run away from the urge to be in my hometown, to work and share my skills and knowledge there. I would be thrilled to start my own company in Dilijan. It’s where I most love to be,” says Gor. “It was a great relief and another hand of encouragement to receive the Armenian Educational Foundation scholarship. It meant a lot, especially for a student from a region. I am lucky to have this generous support.”