AUA Launches Student-Alumni Mentorship Program3 min read
YEREVAN, Armenia — The American University of Armenia (AUA) is pleased to announce the launch of the Student-Alumni Mentorship Program, brought to fruition by the AUA Office of Alumni Relations. The mentorship program aims to facilitate meaningful mentoring relationships between experienced alumni and current students, with a focus on community building and networking.
The kick-off event was held on September 16, bringing 22 current AUA students from diverse backgrounds to meet their AUA alumni mentors for the first time. The program is designed such that the participating alumni mentors provide their respective mentees with academic guidance, career advice, and personal development opportunities throughout each semester. “This is a very important program for our University. We invested a lot of effort and resources to ensure the successful realization of the Student-Alumni Mentorship Program. The call for this program was actually very organic. We received a lot of interest both from current students as well as alumni to start this program. All the stars aligned perfectly for this to be one of the most successful initiatives of the Office of Alumni Relations,” mentioned AUA Chief Communications Officer (CCO) Narek Ghazaryan during his opening remarks.
The selected participants come from various programs, thus mentors were matched with mentees taking into consideration not only their respective backgrounds, but also their general interests, to ensure an effective mentorship experience. Just like every other student mentee, Minehli Hakoupian (BAB ‘22) was very excited about the program and happy to meet her mentor; “It’s really nice to have alumni as our mentors. These are people who have graduated 12, 15 years ago, and they have had different experiences than we do, but at the same time, we have many things in common. I was matched with a very good mentor, founder of a business. We have very similar interests.” Minehli is certain that her mentor will help her make smart decisions about her career.
Narine Petrosyan, manager of the Office of Alumni Relations, highlighted the fundamental role of AUA alumni in bringing this initiative to bear fruit. Although the program does not have precedents, it sparked the interest of AUA alumni who were very responsive to joining the program as mentors.
“Sometimes in our lives, a photo, a song, a movie, or an acquaintance can change a lot; they can play the role of that last decisive drop that fills the cup. Mentors, in my view, are meant to act as people who help without imposing anything, who share without any expectation, who drive their mentees to ask questions they have never asked themselves,” affirms Aramazd Ghalamkaryan (MPSIA ‘2000), one of the mentors. “Nowadays, the younger generation is overwhelmed with a large mass of information and is terrified by the extraordinary expectations that society, their parents, and they themselves put on their shoulders in terms of reaching success and financial well-being. I see my role, inter alia, in showing my mentees the other facets of life and other ways of self-actualization aside from the conventional ones so deep-rooted among the youth. My two mentees are bright and open-minded young people, and I am confident we will have a rewarding, insightful, and memorable mentorship journey together.”
According to the organizers, the Student-Alumni Mentorship Program will be a recurrent venture. The Office of Alumni Relations plans to organize the program twice a year, at the start of each semester, so that more students can benefit from it, and more alumni can experience the bliss of giving back.
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.