“So what do you do everyday?” is what Institute staff are often asked. Here’s a short list: In addition to the research, scholarship, programming, archiving, digitizing, and teaching, a big part of our mission and day-to-day activities involves supporting and mentoring our students. And celebrating their work and accomplishments. Here are some of their ground-breaking achievements this year:

Three  students, Haig Manoukian, Maral Tavitian, and Sarkis Tricha, received Student Recognition Awards exemplifying the highest honors bestowed on graduates. Under 1% of USC graduates are granted the Order of Arête (Maral Tavitian) and the Order of Troy (Haig Manoukian and Sarkis Tricha) for exemplary leadership, academic excellence, and notable contributions to the university community as active leaders or critical contributors in service to peers, the university community or the world at large.


Congratulations to Mané Berikyan and Athena Thomassian, this year’s recipients of the Institute’s Tufenkian Travel Scholarship, which supports student activities and research in contemporary Armenian Studies through travel to Armenia. Mané will be spending two months in Yerevan interning for CivilNet, a human rights and democracy-oriented media publication based in Armenia. Athena will be participating in a two-week internship through the USC chapter of Medics in Armenia, a non-profit organization that focuses on healthcare and medical practices in Armenia.


Mané Berikyan, who also works at the Institute, received the first prize in the Sustainability category at USC’s 2022 Undergraduate Writers’ Conference for her article, “Dictators Are Bad for the Environment and Other Lessons from Central Asia.”


Institute student worker, Arman Dzhragatspanyan, received an Institute research grant to launch a multi-method, interdisciplinary research project that examines trauma and resilience among the Armenian population in Armenia and Artsakh after the 2020 Artsakh war, with a particular focus on the role of historical trauma. More on this soon.


Institute student worker, Sarkis Tricha, has released the second issue of The Slap, a student publication conceived and edited by him that features creative and critical work by undergraduates. If you ever dreamed of the day when you would have a reflection on beauty in Mishima’s “Spring Snow” coupled with a thought-piece on normalizing Armenia-Turkey relations, along with a poem paying tribute to a commuter’s car, this is your day! Read the entire issue here. The first issue of the publication has received over 350 unique visitors across 21 countries.


Institute student worker, Christine Almadjian, received the Dean Joan Metcalf Schaefer scholarship, awarded to students who have displayed a passion for learning and showcase academic excellence. Dean Schaefer was the Dean of Women at USC and embraced young women pursuing their dreams and aspirations. Christine and her sponsor, Adina Lei Savin, are featured in the photo taken during the award ceremony.


Institute student worker, Samvel Krajian, who graduated with a Bachelors in Music Composition, was featured in a number of on campus concerts during the Spring semester. Samvel spearheaded a collaboration between electronic musicians from the Thornton school and students from the Media Arts+Practice program in the School of Cinematic Arts at USC to realize a stunning program of innovative musical and multimedia practice.