YEREVAN, Armenia – Almost 25 years ago, one of the American University of Armenia (AUA)’s first alumni was Kristina Ter-Kazarian, a graduate of the MBA Class of ‘93. Today, she has a successful career as co-founder and general director of Dio Art Consulting. Wanting to give back to her alma mater in a way that was meaningful to her, Ter-Kazarian has chosen to establish the first named scholarship by an alumna and in this way contribute to AUA’s need-blind admissions policy, which ensures that applicants are judged on their merits, rather than their ability to pay. “This has a great social impact and AUA should be proud of it,” she said. “Only about 100 of the 4200 colleges and universities in the U.S. offer need-blind admission. Students in Armenia are very fortunate to have this option at AUA.”
The scholarship aims to target students in undergraduate or graduate engineering programs, and will be awarded to more than one person. Ter-Kazarian is confident that the young generation is extremely talented and bright, with innovative insights and plenty of energy to make a difference in the world. “The world is changing rapidly, and opportunities come every day – new technologies, products, services,” she said. “This is a new and fascinating reality. If young people need skills and knowledge to move faster, learn quicker and minimize mistakes, it is our time to step in and support. Financial circumstances should not stop anyone from dreaming, learning, striving or moving ahead at full speed. It is very rewarding to know that with the scholarship another talented student gets access to the cutting-edge education, entrepreneurship, creativity and innovation offered at AUA.
Ter-Kazarian remarked on her days at AUA during the early years of independence. “Just imagine what it meant to get an MBA back in 1993 in Armenia. We felt like spacemen ready to land on Mars.” According to Ter-Kazarian, two very important things happened to her at AUA. First, she was fortunate to meet, study with and learn from an exceptional group of people, including her classmates, professors, staff and everyone who supported her. At AUA, she found a concentration of motivation, talent, ambition and positivity that was constantly stimulating. She also found her best friends, who she still feels a connection to no matter how far they are from each other. Second, Ter-Kazarian believes AUA was the perfect platform for receiving a pioneering education, both in terms of content and academic process. “It was truly a transformative experience and a chance for all of us,” she remarked.
AUA is continually proud of its many graduates and their commitment to giving back to their alma mater. Alumni like Kristina Ter-Kazarian make it possible for future generations of AUA students to succeed, take risks and achieve their dreams.
Founded in 1991, the American University of Armenia (AUA) is a private, independent university located in Yerevan, Armenia and affiliated with the University of California. AUA provides a global education in Armenia and the region, offering high-quality, graduate and undergraduate studies, encouraging civic engagement, and promoting public service and democratic values.