Pam and Ed Avedisian cutting the ribbon with family and friends.
On Wednesday, October 8, the the Armenian Missionary Association of America (AMAA) celebrated the Grand Opening of the Khoren and Shooshanig Avedisian School and Community Center!
Participants at the opening included: Serj Sargsyan, President of the Republic of Armenia; Armen Ashotyan, Minister of Education and Science; Bradley Busetto, UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative;Hranush Hakobyan, RA Minister of Diaspora, national and local government officials; members of the Avedisian and Bilezikian families; Rev. Dr. Paul Haidostian, President of Haigazian University; Joseph Zeronian, Ed. D.AMAA President; Zaven Khanjian, AMStudents ready for President Sargsyan’s arrivalAA Executive Director and CEO, and hundreds of local and international guess.
Students ready for President Sargsyan’s arrival
The first ribbon cutting ceremony was at the Bilezikian Building, by the members of the Bilizekian family, followed by the ribbon cutting ceremony of the Avedisian School.
Following a beautiful symbolic Armenian traditional dance, Melanya Geghamyan, principal of the school conducted a tour of the building for President Sargsyan. He was very impressed and inquired about several aspects of the LEED certification and the facilities; our student body, and our plans for the future.
Doreen and Chalres Bilezikian cutting the ribbon of Bilezikian building.
In his remarks, Mr. Khanjian stated, “1600 years ago, Saint Mesrob’s invention of the Armenian Alpabet and its direct and significant impact of translating the Bible into Armenian is commemorated in the month of October. Could there be a more appropriate, worthy, sacred and wise expression of gratitude to reciprocate that immortal gift to the Armenian nation than the realization of the dream of the Avedisians and Bilezikians, with the implementation of this beacon of education, a newly constructed, modern and magnificent school.”
“Today, with the official dedication of this sacred structure, it is the heartfelt wishes of the Avedisian and Bilezikian families, joined with members and supporters of the Armenian Missionary Association of America, that these wonderful children, born in our sacred Motherland, following the example of the immortal martyred poet, spark their young impressionable minds with the perpetual light of learning provided at the Avedisian School and the Bilizekian Primary School”, stated Mr. Khanjian, who also thanked President Sargsyan for honoring the Grand Opening and this historical and memorable day by his participation.
President Sargsyan addressing the guests.
There were two special components of the day. The first was President Sargsyan bestowing The Presidential Medal of Movses Khorenatsi to Mr. Edward Avedisian for his outstanding achievements in the spheres of culture, art, literature, education, social sciences and sports. Mr. Sargsyan thanked all those who through their active participation, contribution and input move Armenia forward and make it a better place for its people.
In his remarks, Mr. Avedisian thanked the President, recalling the story of his mother who dreamt of this school and expressed his deep appreciation to see the dream realized for the benefit of the children of Armenia.
Pam Avedisian plays a musical selection on the piano she donated in honor of her parents.
The second special component of the day was when Mrs. Pamela Avedisian offered some very touching remarks in Armenian and proceeded to playing two beautiful classical pieces on the piano that she had dedicated to the school in honor of her parents.
The day also included individual ribbon cutting ceremonies of the spaces for which other benefactors were present to celebrate. The guests then toured the facilities, while other benefactors conducted ribbon-cutting ceremonies of classrooms.
At the evening banquet, Joseph Zeronian, Ed.D., President of the AMAA Board of Directors addressed more than 220 guests who attended a lavish dinner. He offered the sincere thanks of the entire Board to all of the donors of the School and the other fine work of the AMAA.
The PAROS Chamber Choir, comprised of mostly disabled musicians who perform while seated in their wheelchairs, provided a stunning presentation of a medley of sacred music and Komidas songs.
Melanya Geghamyan was presented with an impressive hand watch as a gift of appreciation for her tremendous efforts to move this project along, while running a very impressive school. Mr. Avedisian was presented with a beautiful rendering of the Avedisian School by a local artist.
The amazing historical and memorable day thus ended with all attendees moving away with a feeling of awe, gratitude and thankfulness to the benefactors and AMAA for this magnanimous achievement.
We are extremely grateful to all who have supported the creation of this new school.