From left, Ani Karamyan, Alexandra Missarian Brown, Arev Doursounian, (past scholarship recipients) with AIWA Champion, Harry Parsikian
The Armenian International Women’s Association (AIWA) – a global network dedicated to empowering Armenian women -- has bestowed almost $70,000 in scholarships to Armenian women students for the academic 2017-2018 year.
Scholars are studying in the United States and around the world thanks to an increasing scholarship program that has promoted over 200 students in the past 25 years.
“Our scholarships are often where we first intersect in the lives of Armenian women,” said Ani Kharajian, president of the AIWA Board of Directors. “Young women learn that we want to support their educational efforts and at the same time, other AIWA members and supporters see quite vividly how we start to empower young women as they begin their journey into adulthood.”
AIWA distributes scholarships through AIWA International – the umbrella organization – and through AIWA-Los Angeles and AIWA-San Francisco, two affiliates.
On Tuesday, June 20, three past scholarship recipients spoke at a networking event co-sponsored by AIWA and the Armenian Business Network (ABN).
“I loved that AIWA took a chance on me. They didn’t know me, but they believed in me. And it changed my life,” said Ani Karamyan, a scholarship recipient from Armenia who now lives and works in the Boston area.
“I thought that I would be quiet and not challenge things,” said Alexandra Missarian Brown, a two-time scholarship recipient. “I changed my mind when I saw a photo of my grandmother in the act of teaching. She was described as strong and formidable; a woman who loved what she did. AIWA helped me achieve my goals of teaching, which I now love. I feel like I’m honoring my grandmother.” Alexandra is studying for her PhD in Latin American Studies.
“I love the community of AIWA,” said Arev Doursounian, a recent scholarship recipient. “Through AIWA, I connected with women in AIWA-San Francisco during my internship last summer. I was able to talk about my future and find wonderful support. I can’t wait to give back as an AIWA member.”
The Armenian Business Network joined AIWA to support their work on behalf of women.
"We are honored and delighted to partner with AIWA on their work for women and developing our next generation Armenian women leaders. ABN promotes intellectual philanthropy and facilitates programs where accomplished individuals volunteer and share their know-how with other Armenians to see them succeed in their profession.
We look forward to our continued collaboration with AIWA and creating more opportunities that will benefit our members and community.” said Jack Antounian, ABN founder and president.
AIWA Scholarships are one of many initiatives to empower women. AIWA supports education, economic development and leadership initiatives, as well as educational programs that highlight the achievements and goals of Armenian women.
To see more photos from the ABN-AIWA Spring Soiree, please click HERE.