Posts Tagged ‘hayastan’

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[Armenian Life]

December 19, 2010

Another Hayastan montage to check out.

Armenia

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[FAR Scholarships]: Nishanian Scholars Graduate Gavar State University.

August 2, 2010

For nearly nine years, the Jerair Nishanian Foundation has implemented the Jerair Nishanian Scholarship Program in Armenia through FAR. This program has given more than 50 socially vulnerable students from Gavar State University in the Gegharkunik region and Yerevan State University of Architecture and Construction the opportunity to continue on to higher education.

This year, 12 of the program’s 53 beneficiaries graduated from Gavar State University. One graduate student and seven undergraduate students earned degrees with honors, also known as “Red Diplomas.” Gavar State University Rector Ruzanna Hakobyan, Der Markos Bishop Hovhannisyan, Gegharkunik Diocese Primate, and other guests attended the ceremony. Ruzanna Hakobyan and Der Markos opened the ceremony with their welcome speeches.

While bittersweet, the atmosphere was also exciting and joyful. The 79 graduate students and 253 undergraduates had to say farewell to their beloved university, yet they were also proud. They are now able to fully contribute to the development of their country with their newly achieved knowledge and skills.

In their speeches, the students thanked first and foremost supporter and friend of GSU Jerair Nishanian, who gave them the opportunity to fulfill their dream and study at the university. Graduates also promised to help students in similar conditions at their first opportunity to do so.  

12 beneficiaries receive diplomas

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Credit: FAR Staff

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[Armenian Archaeology]: Uncovering Armenia’s Past in Tigranakert.

August 2, 2010

Excavations and findings from the mountainous Tigranakert are now on display at the archaeological museum in Aghdam.

The city of Tigranakert was an ancient Armenian territory built on the landing of today’s mountainous Karabakh under the rule of King Tigran the Great in the 1st century B.C. It was once part of the Armenian empire and competed with Rome for political strength. The city now lies in the abandoned and disputed buffer zones of Karabakh, near the borders of Azerbejian. Findings heighten today’s tensions over historical possession of the territory between Armenians and Azerbaijanis. With modern politics coming into play, the ruins of Tigranakert remain as a testament to the strong Armenian presence in the area. FAR intern Samantha with the ruins of Tigranakert

Among the artifacts on display is a supposed dish made of clay with “My, Vache, the slave of God” etched into the side. Excavators at the site also uncovered tower walls dating to the Hellenic period and the remains of a 7th century Armenian Church. FAR’s Young Professionals had the opportunity to visit the site this year.

The exhibition opened its doors to the public on June 8th.

For more information, continue reading here.

FAR intern Samantha
at the ruins of Tigranakert

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Credit: Samantha McQueen

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[FAR Schools]: Ounjian School Continues to Grow.

July 31, 2010

Although construction has already been in progress for five months, an opening ceremony dedicated to the launch of the Ounjian School’s new sub building was held on July 8 in honor of its chief supporter Dr. Hovhannes (John) Ounjian’s the arrival at the project site.

The former N21 secondary school, which was completely ruined after the 1988 earthquake, was reconstructed due to the generous benevolence of Dr. Ounjian, who is from New York and also an honorable citizen of Gyumri. The school is named after the benefactor’s parents Armenak and Yeghisabet Ounjian.

Dr. Ounjian also undertook the expenses of the reinforcement and renovation of the school’s sub building, which will contain new classrooms, a library, and language room.

The Reverend Father Tateos Abdalian, a representative of the Armenian Apostolic Church in America (Eastern Diocese), opened the ceremony with a hearty blessing. During his welcome speech, FAR Country Director Bagrat Sargsyan recognized Dr. Ounjian’s mission in Gyumri, which enables 450 children study in favorable conditions. Since 2002, nearly 150 school graduates have also obtained higher education thanks to the support of Ounjian Scholarship Fund.

Dr. Ounjian, Shirak Regional Governor Ashot Giziryan, and several program executives carved their signatures in the wall of one of the rooms to commemorate the ceremony.

Several guests attended, including Armenia’s Deputy Regional Governor, FAR Programs Director Arto Vorperian, who was visiting from the USA, FAR Shirak Department Director Marina Bazayeva, ACYOA APS group members, students, teachers, and journalists.

Shortly after the schoolchildren’s acknowledgement speeches, Dr. Ounjian promised to support the school so that it will one day be rated as the best educational institution in the Republic of Armenia.

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Credit: FAR Staff

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[Dispatches From Armenia]: Lost in Translation.

July 29, 2010

I realize this title is kind of a cop out. But there’s some truth to it. I was lucky enough to constantly be around an Armenian or Russian speaker during my first two weeks here and I could easily get by with my Armenian “hello” and “thank you.”

Now, when I’m out wandering the streets of Yerevan, I run into some problems. The other day I asked for coffee and then I inadvertently refused it. (Refusing rich, delicious Armenian coffee is a now crime in my book, too.) We had to have a third party intervention. Just days before that, I asked for lemonade but ended up with pear juice. Worse things can happen due to my language deficiencies, I know. And at least I’m trying. I think I’ve mastered how to ask for a bottle of water, (essential in this heat) and now I’m working on the forms of you, us, we, etc. Small steps.

Lost in Yerevan

 

Credit: Hasmik Manukyan

One thing’s for certain — I could listen to Armenian for hours and stare at the Armenian signs I see everywhere because the alphabet fascinates me. Does that count? Regardless, I’m so appreciative that most Armenians I meet tolerate my bad pronunciation and dearth of vocabulary, even when their questions are met with my perplexed looks. Their patience and understanding are a testament to their warmth and understanding. Shnorhakal em Hayastan. 

Erin –

Etchings at Tatev Monastery

Credit: FAR Staff
 

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[Dispatches From Armenia]: A Glimpse of CME.

July 28, 2010

It’s amazing what some of Armenia’s doctors are able to work with. Today, while visiting several medical centers in and around Yerevan I was able to see where the physicians participating in this month’s Continuing Medical Education Program are based. Walking through neonatology wards and intensive care units, I heard a few stories about their home institutions.

One anesthesiologist must observe through facial expression and movement how her patients under anesthesia react during surgery because her hospital in Vanadzor doesn’t have all of the proper monitoring equipment. Another neonatologist is one of a team of two who must care for the 30 infants who come to her hospital every month. Her hospital also lacks proper equipment and they are simply unable to transport these children to Yerevan in the case of severe emergencies. And then there are other obstacles, like no electricity, no running water, etc.

I’ve seen similar conditions in other parts of the world. But hearing these stories, no matter how brief, still leaves me incredulous and also awestruck by these doctors’ dedication and resourcefulness. Things need to continue to change, however. The CME program gives them the opportunity to spend a month training with leading specialists in Yerevan. And they can learn new methods and establish a network with their mentors that they can use in the future. CME is making strides with healthcare in this country and with a waiting list of more than 100 people, demand for it is high. With more support it can be expanded, and all of Armenia will continue to benefit as that expansion happens.

Erin –

A modern hospital in Yerevan

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Credit: FAR Staff

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[Dispatches From Armenia]: Yerevan, Day 1.

July 27, 2010

Well, this is it. After nearly two weeks of touring Armenia and Karabagh with this year’s Young Professionals Trip, I’m back in Yerevan for the rest of the summer. It’s a little surreal — we saw quite a bit of this city during the trip and parts of it began to feel familiar and comforting. Now all of those different places we visited are starting to feel congruent.

Despite my haze from prolonged sleep depravation, a conversation with some of my co-workers this morning started to open things up even more. We discussed the high unemployment that drives so many Armenians out of their homeland and the obstacles women in particular often face to get work — the need to be attractive or young enough to get the job as opposed to professionally qualified, for example. While some of it was grim, they also emphasized something very important that all Armenians need: hope. Without this, many won’t even try to stay here in their homeland. Without this, others won’t strive to further educate themselves. Instead, they’ll simply continue to look for ways to leave, and even abandon their families in the process. So FAR’s mission to build the country’s intellectual capital, give Armenia’s people opportunity, and engage the Diaspora is an extremely important task. My first two weeks helped me delve beyond the program descriptions and reports I’ve read for the past year or so, and now I get to see how things are really done. I look forward to having my perspective changed even more.

Erin –

Republic Square

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Credit: FAR Staff