It has been a long and exciting month for this year’s NYSIP interns with many events having taken place. With the program more than halfway through, the participants have truly gotten to know each other and shared some amazing experiences together.
The month kicked off with a professional lecture on July 3 by Anna Bruno, financial consultant for AXA Advisors. Anna discussed her journey to America and how she became involved in the finance industry before opening the lecture up to questions.
The professional lecture series continued on July 10 with an Entrepreneurship Panel conducted at the AGBU Central Office and organized by 2002 NYSIP alumna Taleen Mangassarian. The interactive panel consisted of Hamilton Colwell of Maia Yogurt, Nil Sen of Examville and Joe Hallett of Company Connector. All three speakers discussed their experiences in founding start-up companies and the importance of perseverance and dedication.
On July 11, the interns had the great honour of visiting the headquarters of the Eastern Diocese of the Armenian Church of America. After a tour of the church, they were hosted to a traditional Armenian dinner with His Eminence Archbishop Khajag Barsamian, the Diocesan Primate.
However it was not all professional lectures this month with the interns being treated to two social evenings. On July 13, the Nazarian family hosted the interns at Byblos, a Lebanese restaurant in Manhattan. This was followed the next evening with a rooftop party hosted by NYSIP alumnus from 2006, Carl Balouzian.
On July 15, the students participated in “Sunshine for Seniors”, an annual event and a highlight of the NYSIP program. Every year, the interns gather at the New York Armenian Home, an all-Armenian aged care facility in Queens and perform for the residents. This year’s show contained many acts, including a “Human Pyramid”, “The Von Trapp family singers” and a traditional Armenian “Kochari” dance. After the program, they had the opportunity to speak with the residents and hear their stories. Among the dozens of elderly Armenians at the home, the interns also got had the opportunity to interact with four particular residents who are survivors of the Armenian Genocide.
And finally with the month coming to a close, the interns attended two more lectures. On July 23, author of “Children of Armenia”, Michael Bobelian, spoke about the Armenian Genocide and the progress that has been made toward its recognition. The interns were also provided with a complimentary copy of his book. Then on July 26, Raffi Asatoorian of Urban Engineering spoke to the interns not only about his professional career but also his contributions to the Armenian cause. This was followed by a meeting on July 28 with NYSIP Co-Chair Raffi Balian, who works at the US State Department and discussed a variety of topics, including the future of the Armenian diaspora and nation.