YEREVAN, Armenia – On July 15, 2014, Dr. Armen Der Kiureghian assumed the position of Interim President of the American University of Armenia (AUA), succeeding President Emeritus Dr. Bruce M. Boghosian. Dr. Der Kiureghian is one of the founders of AUA and has previously served as the Founding Dean of Engineering, Director of the Engineering Research Center, Interim Provost, and as a founding member of the Board of Trustees.
Dr. Boghosian, who will return to Tufts University as a faculty member in the fall, reflected upon his time at AUA, stating, “It has been a great privilege to be a part of the American University of Armenia during a time of such growth and innovation for the university. I am confident that under Dr. Der Kiureghian’s leadership, the university will continue to expand and excel as a leading educational institution in the region.”
On the day of Dr. Der Kiureghian’s appointment, he and Dr. Boghosian met with President of the Republic of Armenia Mr. Serzh Sargsyan. President Sargsyan expressed his gratitude to Dr. Boghosian for his four years as AUA President, and welcomed Dr. Der Kiureghian as the new President of AUA. While discussing the demographics of AUA students, Dr. Der Kiureghian asked President Sargsyan for assistance in promoting Armenian universities through embassies and consulates abroad. He stressed the value of diversity in the student body and the richness that it brings to the educational experience of all students. President Sargsyan agreed to make arrangements for Armenian embassies and consulates abroad to display informational materials about AUA and other universities in Armenia.
Dr. Der Kiureghian is the fourth president of AUA. He is on leave from the University of California, Berkeley, where he has served for 36 years, most recently as Professor and holder of the Taisei Chair in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering.
Dr. Der Kiureghian shares, “At the macro level, I have three major priorities: (a) to make sure that the growth of our undergraduate programs stays on track, (b) to put the university on sound and sustainable financial grounds, and (c) to continue improving the quality of our teaching and research programs. To achieve these goals, at the micro level, I intend to strengthen our advising of students, provide incentives for good teaching and innovative research, revamp our communications and development activities, improve the quality of our service to students and our support to the faculty in meeting their teaching responsibilities, develop polices for equitable workload, rationalize academic salaries, increase the number of international students, increase the number of full-time faculty, improve our student learning assessment practices, further expand the programs offered by the University Extension as well as the activities carried out by the Acopian Center for the Environment, the AGBU Papazian Library, the Turpanjian Rural Development Program, and the Digital Library of Armenian Literature. I also intend to enhance our linkages with other institutions of higher learning, government agencies, and the private sector in Armenia.”
Dr. Der Kiureghian’s teaching and research are in risk and reliability analysis of constructed facilities and systems, stochastic structural dynamics, earthquake engineering, and engineering decision making. He has an extensive record of publications, including 115 in archival journals. He is an elected foreign member of the National Academy of Sciences of Armenia and an elected member of the U.S. National Academy of Engineering. He has served as Visiting Professor in universities in Slovenia, Japan, Italy, Denmark, India, and Germany. Dr. Der Kiureghian received his B.S. and M.S. in Civil Engineering from Tehran University, Iran, and his Ph.D. in Civil Engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1975.
Dr. Der Kiureghian will serve as Interim President for one year, while the search for a permanent president is conducted. He shares, “It is an honor for me to return to AUA to lead the institution during this period of success. The university has great things in its future and I look forward to contributing to its continued advancement.”
To read the President’s Message, please click here.
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.