For 65 years, the Armenian Educational Foundation (AEF) has been providing financial assistance to Armenian students and educational institutions. One of AEF’s many educational endeavors is to provide scholarships for students attending public universities in Armenia and Artsakh. In 2007, the first year of this scholarship program, AEF provided 22 scholarships, which has grown to 120 this year.
“The success of this scholarship program is dependent on the generous support of numerous benefactors. We are very grateful to all these individuals who donate $1,000 per year to pay the full tuition for each student,” stated AEF President Al Cabraloff.
AEF’s Armenia Scholarship Committee in Yerevan includes local and expat members, who volunteer their time to ensure a fair and objective selection process. The committee uses a mathematical model to rank scholarship candidates, with points given for various criteria such as; financial need, student of a single parent, multi-children families, if the student resides outside of Yerevan (i.e. villages), parents’ participation in the Artsakh war, military service, volunteer work, academic achievements, etc. Once the scholarship recipients are selected, AEF wire-transfers the tuition directly to the university on behalf of the student.
One of the requirements to continue receiving the AEF scholarship is to volunteer and engage in community service. As such, AEF scholarship recipients volunteer for various organizations by helping at orphanages, tutoring students, assisting the elderly and disadvantaged families, and donating blood, to name a few. Another more specific example, on April 21, 2015, AEF scholarship recipients participated in the “Worldwide Reading” in remembrance of the victims of the Genocide, and additionally, on April 27, 2015, after thousands visited the Genocide Memorial Monument, the students assisted with the clean-up of flowers at Dzidzernakapert.
Scholarship recipients write thank you letters annually to their sponsors. Furthermore, AEF encourages and facilitates scholarship sponsors to meet their sponsored student when visiting Armenia. In the fall of each year, AEF hosts a reception in Yerevan, with members and sponsors, to honor all scholarship recipients. On October 8, 2014, the reception was held at the Ani Plaza Hotel, with Diaspora Minister, Hranoush Hakobyan, as the guest speaker.
“Armenian Educational Foundation is doing a great job. Helping the new generation to conquer their financial problems with education is an honorable action. Moreover it is a long term investment program for improvement of intellectual capacity of our nation and, as a result, prosperous future of Armenia. It is a great pleasure for me to be involved in your program.” wrote Dr. Armen Sarkissian, Ambassador of the Republic of Armenia to United Kingdom and Scholarship Program sponsor of three students since 2011.
On the occasion of the centennial of the Armenian Genocide, AEF established the Richard G. Hovannisian Scholarship for Armenian Genocide Studies; a merit based scholarship for Master and PhD students in Armenia, pursuing studies specializing in the economic, social-demographic, cultural, legal and political aspects of the denial of the Armenian Genocide, and its accrued impact on the Armenian nation.
Since 2000, AEF has awarded over $1.1M in scholarships to deserving students in the United States, Lebanon, and Armenia.