NORTHRIDGE, Calif.—On Monday, March 11, the student government at California State University, Northridge (CSUN), voted to pass a resolution designating the month of April 2015 as a “Month of Commemoration for the 100th Anniversary of the Armenian Genocide of 1915.”
This resolution reconfirmed and expanded on previous stances of the CSUN Associated Students Senate, which has recognized the Armenian Genocide and incorporated a moment of silence at a senate meeting each year.
With nearly 10 percent of its 40,000 students of Armenian heritage, CSUN has the largest Armenian student population at a university outside the Republic of Armenia. Six individuals within Associated Students, the largest number of Armenians on the board in a given year, authored this resolution in special recognition of the Armenian Genocide centennial.
CSUN Associated Students calls on United States President Barack Obama to provide federal support and recognition of these atrocious crimes against humanity and work toward equitable, constructive, stable, and durable Armenian-Turkish relations based upon the Republic of Turkey’s full acknowledgment, with reparations, of the facts and ongoing consequences of the Armenian Genocide.
“Education is at the forefront of this resolution,” stated Talar Alexanian, A.S. Vice President. “It’s important to raise awareness about the Armenian Genocide and its continued denial by the Republic of Turkey to all members of the CSUN community, regardless of their ethnicity or national origin. We must also commend our faculty who actually teach about the genocide and related human rights issues.”
This resolution now allows CSUN AS to host a special presentation on the Armenian Genocide and its commemorative events in collaboration with the CSUN Armenian Student Association and Armenian Studies Department on the week of April 24th each year. It also introduces a “tradition of the rose” ceremony, a student tradition to lay roses at the foot of the campus Matador Statue, in honor of the 1.5 million victims of the genocide.
“As a fourth generation survivor living in the diaspora, passing this resolution was very near and dear to my heart,” said Armenian Student Association member Puzant Berberian.
Members of the Armenian Student Association, Alpha Gamma Alpha Sorority, and Alpha Epsilon Omega Fraternity were also present at the meeting in full support of this measure.