President Markides Christine Simone
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AUA Welcomes Christine Simone to Armenia

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YEREVAN, Armenia — On Monday, October 19, 2020, President Karin Markides and the Executive Team of the American University of Armenia (AUA) welcomed Christine Simone, President of the Manoogian Simone Foundation, to express gratitude for her continued, on-the-ground support of the University and its community. Christine Simone arrived in Armenia in late September to be present and on the ground to support AUA and the nation in this challenging time. 

Shortly after the current Artsakh war began, Ms. Simone, through the Manoogian Simone Foundation, established an emergency fund for the 34 AUA students from Artsakh who were impacted by the war. This followed her support earlier this year of an emergency fund for AUA students impacted by the crisis of the explosion in Beirut, Lebanon in August, 2020. This philanthropy is part of a greater tradition of generosity demonstrated by the Manoogian Simone Foundation throughout the University’s history. 

Christine’s mother, Louise Manoogian Simone, one of the founders of AUA and main benefactor of the University, is the namesake of AUA’s Manoogian Simone College of Business and Economics, the leading business school in the region. The Manoogian Simone Foundation also founded the Manoogian Simone Research Fund (MSRF) in 2018 for students and researchers in Armenia, which is aimed at building research capacity to advance economic growth and development issues in Armenia. The topics for applied research, which are related to Armenia’s development needs across a wide range of areas, are aligned with the RA Government’s priorities for the advancement of Armenia.

In their meeting, President Markides and Ms. Simone discussed the future of AUA and Armenia. The Manoogian Simone Foundation’s continued support of AUA’s advancement will enable the University to carry out its mission through innovative Open Centers of Excellence and Reality Labs, which connect students to industry and academia, playing a key role in student life and career prospects. Ms. Simone has played an instrumental role and will continue to support AUA’s mission of contributing to the regional development and advancement of Armenia, particularly in the areas of hospitality management, tourism, STEM education, and the potential future expansion of the University. AUA is immensely grateful for her critical efforts in such difficult times.

On behalf of AUA, we also applaud Christine Simone’s donation of 3 million USD to the Hayastan All Armenian Fund and for her active engagement and critical efforts since the start of the current Artsakh War. 

Founded in 1991, the American University of Armenia (AUA) is a private, independent university located in Yerevan, Armenia, affiliated with the University of California, and accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission in the United States. AUA provides local and international students with Western-style education through top-quality undergraduate, graduate, and certificate programs, promotes research and innovation, encourages civic engagement and community service, and fosters democratic values.