President’s Message

Armen Der Kiureghian_portrait

It is a privilege to welcome you to the website of the American University of Armenia. AUA was founded in 1991, almost three years after the devastating Spitak earthquake of December 7, 1988. It was conceived as a constructive response to the immense human and economic losses suffered as a result of the earthquake. The initial years of the university coincided with economic turmoil and political conflict. Nevertheless, the university persevered and rapidly grew to become one of the finest institutions of higher learning in Armenia and the region. AUA is accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission, and it is affiliated with the University of California.

As one of the co-founders of AUA and its fourth president, it is my honor to lead the University on its mission to provide teaching and research programs in a setting that values and develops academic excellence, free inquiry, integrity, leadership and service to society. Armenia is an ancient land with a rich culture and a strong tradition of excellence in education. AUA builds on this foundation by adding American ideals of academic freedom, shared governance, social responsibility, interdisciplinary studies, and critical thinking. Imbued with these qualities, our graduates go on to assume leadership positions in society and serve as catalysts of positive change and advancement.

AUA offers bachelor’s degree programs in business, computer science, engineering sciences, data science, and English and communications, and master’s degree programs in business, strategic management, economics, law, industrial engineering and systems management, computer and information sciences, public health, political science and international affairs, and teaching of English as a second language. In addition, AUA operates research centers affiliated with each of the graduate programs, as well as the Acopian Center for the Environment, the Entrepreneurship and Product Innovation Center (EPIC), and the Digital Library of Classical Armenian Literature. Our AGBU-Papazian Library, which is open to the general public, offers one of the finest collections of print and electronic material in the English language in the region. All these activities are housed in modern and state-of-the-art facilities on our campus in the heart of Yerevan. AUA also conducts the Turpanjian Rural Development Program, which aims at facilitating the development of small businesses and entrepreneurship throughout rural Armenia.  Furthermore, the AUA Extension enrolls thousands of students annually in non-degree and certificate courses in Yerevan, Gyumri, Dilijan, Vayots Dzor and Stepanakert.

AUA has a diverse body of faculty representing many different nationalities and cultures. Although a strong majority of the students is from Armenia, an increasing number come from abroad, including many diasporan Armenians. AUA offers them a U.S.-accredited degree while   living and studying in their homeland. For non-Armenian students, AUA offers the opportunity to experience learning in a fascinating and historically important center of world civilization. Interaction among local, diasporan and international students enriches their lives and fosters life-long friendships.

Like other private universities, AUA depends on outside sources of funding, because the tuition we charge covers but a fraction of the cost of educating each student.  Furthermore, we offer financial aid to all admitted students, who otherwise cannot attend due to financial need. While AUA has received support from the governments of Armenia and the United States, it depends in large part on philanthropy, primarily from Armenian organizations and individuals in the diaspora.  We are grateful to all those who recognize the important mission of AUA and make it the focus of their investment in Armenia.

I invite you to explore our website to learn more about the University and its programs. If you have questions or comments, please do not hesitate to contact my office by telephone at (+374 60) 612 526 or by e-mail at We also invite you to visit the AUA campus to learn more about this unique, vibrant and evolving institution of higher learning.

Dr. Armen Der Kiureghian