The administration of the college received with pride the letter of the Minister of Education and Sciences of the Republic of Armenia, Minister Armen Ashodian, in which he appreciated the 50 years of endeavor of the college in its task to prepare Armenian generations.

In his letter, Ashodian stated that Levon and Sophia Armenian College is one of those colleges which has been able to accomplish the supreme work of educating Armenian generations with national and patriotic values.

The Minister ended his letter by advising the students to be sound hard-workers who could accomplish their dreams the minute they set their goals.

Like every year, this year too, the college participated in the annual seminar of “Horizon” center. The college was represented by Vartan Pampelian and George Aintablian (Grade 10 students.)
Six students from the secondary section were present at the seminar “For a Better Society” at Haigazian University and got certificates for that.

Representatives from the secondary section of the college were also present at the round table about “Chavakhk” organized by Zavarian Student Association.

On the other hand, the graduating students of the college (Grade 12 and BT3) visited the Middle East University and were introduced to its majors and the conditions of being admitted to it.

Friday, April 4 was a memorable day for the students of Grade 9 of the college who had the pleasure to host the young artists of Chavakhk, who were in Lebanon to have performances for the Lebanese Armenians.

The guests from Chavakhk were welcomed by Palig Haboyan who in few lines introduced to them the college, the students’ extracurricular activities, the subjects taught in Armenian, and the interest of the students in Chavakhk.

As an honor to the guests, a program was presented. Tro Mirzayan performed a monologue, Philip Zakarian’s “Philip” poem. Lori Karnigian sang “Sorry for that Country”, and Anahid Nalbandian recited Shahantoukhd’s “Exception” poem. Afterwards, Nancy Solakian and Caroline Garabedian presented a “Naz Bar.”

At the end of the program, the principal, Mr. Vicken Avakian, announced that “Chavakhk is a piece of our fatherland outside Armenia. It has provided to the Armenians prominent figures: Vahan Derian, Terenig Demirjian, Hagop Gochoyan, Cardinal Aghachanian, Loucine Zakarian, Roupen Der Minassian, Hovhanness Kachaznouni, Hamo Ohannessian, and others. The crisis of Chavakhk is the crisis of all Armenians. Armenians are strong together – Armenia-Artzakh-Chavakhk – all together are strong and unbeatable.”

By continuing, the principal, Vicken Avakian, talked about strengthening and creating closeness in the relations between Chavakhk and Diaspora as a condition to create wholeness of Armenians.

At the end of his word, the principal invited the guests from Chavakhk and the students of Grade 9 to sign each one of them on an Armenian flag and then donate those flags to one another as a souvenir for visiting the college.

After the principal’s word, a word of thankfulness was delivered by Nasled Keyan, the leader of “Kohanamk” dance assembly of Chavakhk. On this occasion, he invited the students of the college to dance with the members of the dance group. They even taught the students a dance after which all danced together the traditional Armenian dance “Geovend.”

The visit of the youngsters of Chavakhk to the college ended with a group picture.

On Friday, April 4, the intermediate and the secondary students of the college visited the 35th Armenian Book Exhibition of the Armenian Catholicosate of the Great House of Cilicia in two stages. The students were introduced to the newly published Armenian books. They browsed happily around the book-exhibited tables and purchased books that interested them.

On Tuesday, April 1, the college responded to the call of the three Armenian political parties to stop the lessons from 12 to 2 p.m. as a support to the Armenians at Kessab.
At 12 o’clock all the lessons were stopped in the college, and the students gathered in the hall of the college where the principal, Mr. Vicken Avakian, explained to the students why that step was taken that day. He said that the Armenians form one unity. “The strife of the Armenians in Kessab is our strife. In critical situations like this, it is our duty to stand by each other, to reinforce one another, and to show to our enemy, the Turk, that he cannot suppress our people. Armenians know how to stand on their feet after overcoming all difficulties and to ask for their lands and rights,” he said.
After the principal’s word, the students were dismissed from the college, and on their way home they were interrogated by reporters from various agencies about the aim of the strike.

VICTORIOUS IN SPORT

2014-03-28

During the past weeks, the college participated in LEVAM’s competitions in athletics and biking and won first place and third place prizes.
Nareg Arslanian (1997-1998 births) and Vartan Sarkissian (1995-1996 births) won the first prize while Yesayi Adourian (1997-1998 births) won the third prize in the long distance running.
In the biking competitions, the college prevailed in the competitions of girls and got the first and third place titles. Joyce Barsoum won the first place while Rita Ouligian won the third place. In the boy’s competition, Nareg Arslanian won the fourth place.

March was a month full of competitions for the students of the college. The students participated in “Khatchig Babigian” Armenology competitions in Armenian language, Armenian history, and recitation and passed to the second stage.

The secondary section participated in “Moushegh Ishkha”s poetical recitation competition organized by Hamazkayin’s Regional Committee of Lebanon. Natalie Kelkhatcherian won the second place.

Four students from the secondary section participated in a general knowledge competition organized by Dekhrouni Student and Youth Association and won the fourth place.

On March 24 and upon the decision of the National Body, the Armenian National schools were closed. On that day, the principals and the teaching staffs of those schools were present at Yeghishe Manougian National School to participate in the pedagogical training day. Principals and teachers were divided into groups, and each group listened to a lecture. There were also discussions about pedagogical-professional subjects.

The pedagogical day ended at 2:30 p.m.

In March and upon the invitation of the administration of the college, the students of Grades 7 and 8 of the college had lectures about sexual education. The lecturers were two medical doctors, Kohar Vartanian and Irena Arpajian, who introduced to the students medical knowledge and general information that could interest teenagers at their puberty.

By inaugurating the activities of the 50th jubilee of the college, on Thursday, March 6, the alumni committee of the jubilee honored in a unique celebration the long-serving teachers of the college.
Under the patronage of the Catholicos of the Great House of Cilicia, His Holiness Aram I, and the presidency of Bishop Shahe Panossian, the Prelate of the Armenian Diocese in Lebanon, the celebration took place at “Yercho Samuelian Yerakouyn” hall in the Armenian Prelacy. Hagop Khatcherian, the representative of the Central Bureau of ARF, members of the Educational Council, members of the Board of Trustees of the college, and 250 graduates from the college honored the respectable teachers with their presence.
The celebration started with the presentation of the respectable teachers with their entrance to the hall. Passing through the array of the students, the teachers who had served the college for more than ten years entered the hall respectively. The current and present principals, Vicken Avakian and Garo Hovhannessian headed the teachers. The last teacher who entered the hall in a thunder of applauses was Miss Olivia Balian, a member in the first teacher’s staff of the college in the year 1964.
Loucine Demirjian, a graduate from the college, made the inauguration of the celebration by the anthem of the college, after which words in Armenian and Arabic were delivered by graduates from the college, Raffi Geveoghlanian and Maria Daghlian. They claimed that 50 years wasn’t a short period of time in an educational institution which has provided with thorough devotion generations to Armenians and Lebanon. Through the past decades, 1200 graduates from the college have enriched the Armenian life through their successes and contributions. The graduates owe those successes and contributions to those who wasted soul, mind, and breath so that they turn to kind human beings, ideal citizens, and good Armenians.
The speakers of the day said that they had the honor and joy to celebrate teacher’s day in a way that is totally different than all other teachers’ days. “Today, representatives of the big family of Levon and Sophia Hagopian College are here – our dear principals, educators, teachers, and classmates. What joins us is the 50th anniversary of the college. Today, after many years when we recall our school years, we miss our teachers, and their advices and suggestions ring in our ears. We want to find one another so that we once again live those beautiful days that have become memories and history,” they stated.
The program of the day was trusted completely in the hands of the students of Sophia Hagopian. On this occasion, the dancing group of the college presented two dances after which Loucine Demirjian, Njteh-Artzakh Bodroumian, and Yervant Keshishian created a nice atmosphere by singing classical Armenian and foreign songs. Zakar Keshishian played on the fife.
In a special DVD, some teachers and principals who are abroad sent their words – long-serving former principal, Mr. Levon Nahabedian, who is a current resident in the USA, former teachers Georgig Rasdgelenian, Rita Kassabian-Kaprielian, Haygaz Terterian, and Bishop Sebouh Sarkissian, the Prelate of the Armenian Diocese in Iran. Feeling overwhelmed by the occasion and delivered words, Mr. Joseph Zouki, who had served the college for 37 years, delivered a word to the presence.
The principal, Mr. Vicken Avakian, delivered a word in which by making the opening of the celebrations of the 50th jubilee of the college thanked His Holiness Aram I, the Catholicos of the Great House of Cilicia, for granting his patronage for the celebrations of the jubilee of the college and Bishop Shahe Panossian, the Prelate of the Armenian Diocese in Lebanon, for presiding the celebrations.
The principal, Mr. Vicken Avakian, stated that Levon and Sophia Hagopian Armenian College on its 50th jubilee presents itself to the Armenian people with an honorable past and a proud good reputation. As a result to this past, the college has prepared through the past decades tens of teachers, many principals, cultural activists, responsible of national institutions, devotees to public organizations, medical doctors, and businessmen. “In one word, Armenians who represent the various classes of our Armenian society with national identity and personality owe their spiritual and mental values to this college,” he said.
“The graduates of the college,” continued Mr. Vicken Avakian, “constitute a great energy which is our biggest richness that is ten times more or even hundred times more than the materialistic value of our educational institutions. Materialistic possessions wear out, are wasted, and vanish while man with his achievement remains and is eternalized.”
By addressing his word to the present teachers, the principal said, “Buildings are important for the educational work, but they are not enough because what gives life and soul to those buildings is man, the teacher, our biggest value. Teachers have prepared the greatest men of our history. Teachers have formed our destiny and personality. We believe that teachers build our present and future.”
At the end, the principal, Mr. Vicken Avakian invited the Prelate Shahe Panossian to participate in honoring the teachers. Thirty teachers who have served the college 10 to 37 years received special souvenirs. The following teachers were honored: Maral Panossian, Rula Younes, Ani Manougian, Rita Ohannessian, Madlen Vartanian, Lina Nasri, Nouha Yammin, Melkon Demirjian, Suzan Tazian, Vatche Boulghourjian, Atam Tazian, Najla Adas, Zepur Nenejian, Vicken Dishchekenian, Osan Meserlian, Robert Kurdian, Jackline Najjar, Hagop Handian, Mike Boghossian, Louise Zeidan, Hasmig Mouradian, Antranig Krajian, Garo Hovhannessian (principal 1987-2000), Varouj Chaparian, Nemer Suleiman, Samuel Boyajian, Minas Papazian, Joseph Kalousdian, Joseph Zouki, and Olivia Balian. The 50th jubilee alumni committee which had organized the celebration presented a surprise to the presence when it also honored the current principal of the college, Mr. Vicken Avakian who has served the college as a teacher and principal for 16 years.
After the honoring ceremony, the Bishop Shahe Panossian, the Prelate of the Armenian Diocese in Lebanon, delivered his word. He expressed his content seeing the graduates of the college all gathered around it and wished that their feelings of love and relatedness towards the college always remain strong. The Prelate appreciated the ceremony of honoring long-serving teachers and stated that the Armenian teacher’s mission and role are great in our life. At the end of his word, the Prelate wished success to the celebrations of the jubilee with the anticipation of seeing the college in constant successes and achievements.
After the honoring ceremony, the cake for the 50th jubilee was cut; the Prelate, the head of the National Educational Council, the former and current principals of the college, the long-serving teachers, and representatives from the first and last graduates of the college participated in cutting the cake.
After the end of the formal part of the celebration, the evening continued by heartwarming words, songs, presenting pleasant recollections, student-teacher greetings, and memorable photographs.

PARTICIPATIONS

2014-03-03

During the past weeks, the college participated in various extracurricular activities. The students of the intermediate section were present at the performance of the talents of the new generation of Artzakh who had arrived to Lebanon on the occasion of the week of Artzakh’s culture.

The intermediate and the secondary students of the college and during three phases participated in the Armenology competition of “Khatchig Babigian”, Armenian language and Armenian history, organized by the Catholicosate of the Great House of Cilicia.

On the other hand, the students of the college enlivened two activities; the activity of ARCL devoted to the International Ladies’ Day and the activity of the Ladies’ Committee of St. Karasoun Manoug Church on the occasion of “Michink.”

In the realm of planting trees in Lebanese Armenian schools, the CAA (Chavakhk-Artzakh-Armenia) committee of the Lebanese Central Bureau of ARF-D planted a tree on the memory of the fedayi of Artzakh, Mher Choulhajian, a graduate from the college, on Friday, February 28.
On this occasion and on behalf of the organizing committee, Hagop Karneshian stated that February was the month of victories for the Armenians. In February many occasions were commemorated like the Revolution of February, Vartanantz, and the expansion of the struggle of Artzakh. Three phases in which the “No” of the Armenian people was expressed at different periods against threatening forces facing the united determination of the Armenians.
Karneshian noted that the objective of planting trees in Armenian schools was to keep the memory of the Armenian heroes who have accomplished victories live in the minds of Armenian students.
Afterwards, the students presented a program set for that occasion. Anahid Nalbandian presented the poem “Proverb on Tree Planting Occasion.” Caroline Garabedian recited “The Burial of the Hero” of Megerdich Beshigtashlian while a group of students sang “The Son of the Warrior” and “On the Slope of the Mountain.”
The message of the day was delivered by Mr. Hovig Bertizlian, the principal of Karasoun Manoug National School. He said that the current generation should feel lucky because it is living at a time where the homeland is independent. “The tyrant socialist empire has been collapsed, and our people have retrieved part of their historical homeland, Artzakh. Today, the liberated Artzakh is enjoying its freedom on the expense of its 7000 martyrs. Those martyrs advise us to continue their path and liberate the remaining confiscated lands of the Armenians.” “The martyrs,” Bertizlian continued, “don’t turn to heroes in one day and become martyrs. They live a whole life with the national values and the ideals of the Armenian people.” As a result, he advised the students to be ready for the forthcoming struggles with invincible determination, undaunted belief, and national ideals.
At the end of his message, Bertizlian claimed that Mher Choulhajian, the graduate from the college, was a martyr of the struggle of Artzakh. “Choulhajian was raised in a national Armenian school and reached the highest state of sacrifice with his courage and self-devotion. Consequently, the tree which will flourish in the college will be an everlasting reminder of his example and of the imperishable national values that he believed in,” concluded Bertizlian.
After Hovig Bertizlian’s message, the tree planting ceremony took place after which the principal, teachers, and students left the college after having a group picture.

The Student Council of the college organized a celebration on the occasion of “Paregentan” in the evening of Friday, February 28.

The hall of the college transformed completely on that day. For three hours, from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m. the students who had been disguised in different forms passed joyful and pleasant hours by singing, dancing, and eating.

During the celebration, there was the presentation of the best disguised students.

The celebration was a success. Students went to their homes carrying with them unforgettable memories and happy moods.

In the middle of the academic year 2013-2014, at 5 p.m. on Wednesday, February 26, the college held its third parent-teacher meeting; more than 150 parents were present at the meeting.

At the beginning of the meeting, the students of Grades 9 and 12 went to their classrooms with their parents and had individual meetings with their teachers so that they evaluate together the results of the two trial exams that they had done in the college.

In the first part of the meeting, Christine Der Sarkissian talked to the present parents about the subject “How to Have Responsible Children.” By the use of the power point, Der Sarkissian gave some information and useful advices related to parents’ everyday life to the present parents.

Then, the principal, Mr. Vicken Avakian, rewarded the “Ideal Students” of the 12 classes of the college during the months January and February after which he made some announcements that facilitated the administrative work of the college.

At the end of the meeting, parents approached the homeroom teachers of their children and got their report cards.

For the four consecutive year, on February 21 and on the occasion of “Mother Tongue” Day, the college celebrated in a proper celebration the occasion of our sublime language. The celebration came as a closing ceremony for all the competitions that took place in Armenology subjects extended on a whole month during which the students of the intermediate and secondary sections of the college participated in competitions like, “Let’s pronounce correctly,” language workshop, composition, recitation, and oral presentation. The winners of these competitions were rewarded during this occasion.
The celebration of “Mother Tongue” Day took place in the hall of the college and in the presence of Sarkis Guiragossian, the guest of the day, and the national painter Carlos Sayatian, who was visiting the college.
After listening to the anthems of Lebanon and Armenia, the opening word was delivered by Mher Kaplanian who referred to the importance of the Armenian language as a means to preserve the Armenians. He stated that the Armenian language has been the spiritual homeland of the Armenians through which they were born, raised, nurtured, became Armenian, and turned to a nation. “If we are Armenians, let’s remain faithful to our language, and let our might, love, and future be in our language,” stressed Kaplanian.
The program of the day included recitations and piano performances. The following students recited consecutively: Ara Torossian, (“There is a Terrible Thing There”), Caroline Garabedian (“Exception”), Kevork Yacoubian (“Pigrimage for its Birth”), Tro Mirzayan (“I want to die by singing”), and Natalie Kelkhatcherian (“The Orphan’s Hands”). Marta Chorbajian and Nancy Solakian played on the piano.
Then, the principal of the college, Mr. Vicken Avakian, welcomed the guests and presented the list of the “Let’s Know our Language” competitions. He also introduced the lecturer of the day, Mr. Sarkis Guiragossian, a writer and a poet and the administrator of the Armenology section at the Great House of Cilicia, and invited him to deliver his message.
By referring to the most beautiful quotes expressed by famous Armenian writers and poets, Sarkis Guiragossian noted that the Armenian language found by Mesrob Mashdotz “is not only a simple tool for communication but also the source of our identity, the path of our culture, the savor of our Armenian faith, and the eternal spring for the immortality of the Armenian people.”
By continuing, Guiragossian said, “Our language is our homeland. We are in the language-homeland, have been, and saved by the Armenian letters. Language is a nation’s parent and the birthplace. It is our collective memory and the storehouse of blessing and curse. Language is our spiritual homeland.”
At the end of his message, Guiragossian distributed the prizes to the winners of the competitions. 11 students from the intermediate and secondary sections of the college received awards: Mher Kaplanian, Natalie Kelkhatcherian, Christ Artinian, Ara Torossian, Arsho Injeyan, Angelina Sarkissian, Tro Mirzayan, Cynthia Tavitian, Nareg Shadoyan, Kevork Yacoubian, and Lilit Kayabalian.
On this occasion, Carlos Sayatyan expressed his feelings concerning this occasion and delivered a word. He said that language, first of all, “is the thought; and the greatest danger nowadays is the danger that threatens our thoughts. We have to keep that thought so that we create in Armenian, think in Armenian, and live in Armenian.”
Finally, the celebration ended with the anthem of the college.

The responsible of Hamazkayin’s printing press visited the college and passed one day in it exhibiting and selling children’s and teenager’s books.

The college participated in LEVAM’S chess competition this year with 12 male and female students of which five got awards each in his age group.
The award winners are:
- Setrag Hajian the first (below 20 years boys)
- Mireille Tashjian the first (below 16 years girls)
- Rita Ouligian the second (below 18 years girls)
- Nanor Ainteblian the third (below 14 years girls)
- Sarin Shadoyan the third (below 16 years girls)

PARTICIPATION IN FOOTBALL COMPETITION

The college also participated in LEVAM’s big football competitions, and at the end of the first stage the college was left out after being defeated by Jemaran (3-6) and Yeghishe Manougian (after equalizing 1-1 but being defeated by penalties 2-3).

The “Cheese and Wine” night is one of the most awaited annual activities of the Board of Trustees of the college which gathers the friends, teachers, and parents of Sophia Hagopian so that they enjoy together their time and provide financial and moral support to the college.

This year the activity took place on Saturday, January 25. More than 150 people passed joyful hours with a pleasant program and Karaoke songs.

The opening of the night was done by Dikran Kalousdian, a member in the Board of Trustees, who welcomed the presence. Then, Raffi Torossian by playing Armenian classical pieces on his saxophone created a cozy atmosphere in the presence. Afterwards, Simon Gosdantinian increased the enthusiasm in the hall by his accordion. By roaming around the tables and encouraging the presence to sing, Gosdantinian succeeded in elevating the moods of the presence to the maximum.

Karaoke songs followed. By following the lyrics of the songs on a big screen, the presence sang Armenian, Arabic, and French songs.

The principal, Mr. Vicken Avakian, delivered his word and reminded that the year 2014 was the 50th jubilee of the college. He talked about the future activities of the jubilee, and as the message of the day he stressed on the principle of loyalty. “50 years of loyalty to the slogan of the college ‘Hard work ennobles,’ 50 years of loyalty to the national-moral values that the college has been teaching, and 50 years of loyalty to the Armenian church, school, and culture without which we are degenerated,” he said. In his word, the principal welcomed both the presence who loyally encourage the “Cheese and Wine” activity which is carried out annually and the present teachers’ staff of whom many have served the college loyally for more than 20-25 years.

After the principal’s word, the night continued with Karaoke songs and a lottery sale. Some donations were done as a result of the enthusiastic atmosphere in the hall.

The presence left the hall of the college at late hours with content moods.

We announce with joy that Levon and Sophia Hagopian Armenian College celebrates the 50th jubilee of its foundation in 2014 with pompous activities and under the patronage of His Holiness Aram I, Catholicos of the Great House of Cilicia.

The Prelate of the Armenian Diocese in Lebanon, Bishop Shahe Panossian, will preside the celebrations of the jubilee. For this purpose, a special jubilee committee has been assigned under which two other committees work – the executive body of the jubilee and the alumni body of the jubilee.

The following members constitute the 50th jubilee body of Levon and Sophia Hagopian Armenian College:

-Vrej Sabounjian
-Panos Manjian
-Antranig Messerlian
-Karnig Megerditchian
-Jean Momjian
-Levon Chennozian
-Raffi Ourfalian (USA)
-Antranig Andonian (USA)
-Varoujan Keoseyan (USA, representative of the Armenian Educational Foundation)

The activities of the jubilee extend throughout the year and take place in Lebanon and in different Dioceses wherever there are a big number of graduates from Sophia Hagopian College.

Some of the planned activities are: honoring the former teachers of the college on a special night, publication of the 50th jubilee book, preparation of a documentary DVD, a cultural performance of former and current graduates and students of the college in a special program, and the dinner of the jubilee.

In January, the secondary students of the college also had the opportunity to be present at the presentation of the comic play “Aunt from Paris” by Nareg Dourian who was in Lebanon upon the invitation of Hamazkayin Regional Committee in Lebanon.

For more than one and half hours, the students lived periods of extreme laughter with Dourian and with the professional actors forgetting their hectic routine life of studying for a while.


On Monday, January 27, the students of Grades 11, 12, BT2, and BT3 of the college, accompanied by their responsible teachers, visited the annual exhibition of the Armenian Catholic Association for university students that took place this year in “Bedoghlian” hall at St. Cross Church in Zalka.

Students roamed the different barracks of the exhibition and were closely introduced to the admission conditions of the universities, their majors, and the facilities of their tuition fees.

At 10:30 a.m. on Friday, January 24, the secondary students of the college were present at the display of the film “Orphans of the Genocide” that took place under the patronage of the Armenian Case Committee in Lebanon at “Hagop Der Melkonian” theatre.

At the end of the display, the students expressed their impressions and gratitude to the director Bared Maronian, and after being photographed with him left the theatre.

As an annual custom, this year, too, the college participated in the Lebanese-Armenian benevolent association’s gathering as an honor to the elderly people and which took place in “Yercho Samuelian” hall at the Armenian Prelacy.

The college participated in the program of the activity by dancing Armenian and Greek dances. With the dancing teacher Nanor Keleshian, the 30 member dancing group succeeded in creating an enthusiastic atmosphere in the elderly people.

Bidding goodbye to the year 2013 and welcoming the year 2014 took place in the college in a series of activities that created happy festive atmosphere in all.

VISITING A CIRCUS

Before the festive days, and upon the invitation of “Jbid” association, the students of Grades 7 and 8 visited a circus and passed one and half pleasant and joyful hours away from their daily lessons on Thursday, December 19.

AROUND THE FESTIVE TABLE

On Monday, December 23, the administration, the Board of Trustees, the Ladies’ Committee, and the Teacher’s Stuff of the college, gathered around the festive table and welcomed the year 2014. For more than two hours, the presence, gathered in “Noah” restaurant, bade goodbye to the year 2013 in happy moods and wished that the year 2014 would grant success, health, and happiness to all.

Around the festive table, the teachers sang, recited, and exchanged happy wishes. On this occasion, the principal, Mr. Vicken Avakian, delivered his heartwarming words stressing the importance of being always together, working together, and yearning for the progress and prosperity of the college.

There was also a lottery sale and its draw. The lucky ones received valuable gifts.

EVENING PARTY

On the same day at night, the students’ Council organized the Christmas and New Year party for the students of the secondary classes of the college in the hall of the college.

The party included singing and dancing, lottery, and reception.

MULTICULTURAL DAY AND ELECTION OF MISS

LEVON AND SOPHIA HAGOPIAN COLLEGE

On Tuesday, December 24, the college celebrated the New Year. In the morning, the students went to St. karasoun Manoug at New Marash, and after getting the communion and being revived spiritually they returned to the college where they started their preparations for the Multicultural Day.

The Multicultural Day was a novelty to the students of the college. As a result, fifteen female students representing 15 different countries ascended the stage; each one of them was wearing a certain country’s costume and through singing and dancing Miss Levon and Sophia Hagopian College was going to be elected. During two hours, the students presented their talents by being representatives of Italy, Armenia, India, Western United States, Eastern United States, Syria, China, France, Russia, Spain, Brazil, Germany, Venezuela, Sri Lanka, and Japan. Two juries, one consisting of teachers and the other one of students, made the first elimination and chose six representatives from the fifteen students (Japan, Armenia, Sri Lanka, Brazil, Russia, and Spain) and asked them questions related to general knowledge and intelligence. Based on the answers, the lucky one was chosen and granted the title of Miss Levon and Sophia Hagopian College, Miss Armenia, Nancy Solakian.

Solakian was inaugurated with a unique crown and a bouquet of flowers. The guest of the day, Santa Claus, participated in the inauguration and spread a festive atmosphere everywhere.
The celebration ended with great enthusiasm.

All the students went to their vacation with beautiful memories and with good wishes to start their New Year with new and high moods.

In the presence of 150 ladies and friends, the Ladies’ Committee of the college organized a gathering in the hall of the college on the occasion of Christmas and New Year on Wednesday, December 18.

Mrs. Rita Charian, a member in the Ladies’ Committee, made the opening of the activity and welcomed the presence. Then, Mrs. MarlenDanageozian, the guest of the day, presented a beneficial lecture about different kinds of flowers and about the ways of taking care of them. The present ladies followed the subject with great interest and through their various questions they were enlightened more about the beautiful world of flowers.

The choir of the college presented a series of songs related to Christmas and New Year. Afterwards, Santa Clauses arrived bearing with them cakes, and they created a happy mood in the present parents. There was also a lottery sale and its draw. The atmosphere was so enthusiastic that some parents did various donations.

The activity ended at 1:30 p.m. with content and enthusiastic moods created in the presence.

The second parent meeting for the academic year 2013-2014 took place on Tuesday, December 17; during the meeting the results of the first term were appreciated, and the report cards were distributed.

At the beginning of the meeting, the principal, Mr. Vicken Avakian, honored the “Ideal Students” of the twelve classes in the college during the months October and November with special certificates. Then, he gave parents a series of advices which could facilitate the educational, pedagogical, and the administrative life of the college.

In his word, the principal also mentioned the activities of the golden jubilee of the college and the expectations that the college had from parents concerning that issue.

After the principal’s word, the present parents approached the homeroom teachers of their children and received the report cards. Some of them even met with teachers who teach their children and had beneficial discussions concerning the academic state of their children.

In the realm of paying his first visit to Armenian National Schools, the new Prelate of the Armenian Diocese in Lebanon, Bishop Shahe Panossian, visited Levon and Sophia Hagopian Armenian College on Monday morning, December 16, accompanied by the president of the National Educational Council, Mr. Hagop Yacoubian, and the overseer of the Educational Council, Miss Maral Antoyan.

At the entrance of the college, the Prelate was welcomed by the principal, the Board of Trustees, the Ladies’ Committee, and the students of the college. The traditional blessing of water and salt took place, and then the prelate headed to the principal’s office where he had the opportunity to be closely introduced to the present state and the future plans of the college.

Then, during a celebration organized in the hall of the college, the principal welcomed the guest on behalf of all wishing that that blessed and fruitful visit would mark a new beginning in the progress and success of the college.

By referring to the fifty passed years of the college, the principal said that as in the past at present, too, Levon and Sophia Hagopian Armenian College is one of the main veins of our Diaspora. The college has always provided responsible young people to our national institutions. The college owes a lot of its successes to the Prelates of the Armenian Diocese in Lebanon who successively have always provided it with a special care since it is the only Armenian National secondary school in Bourj Hammoud.

After the principal’s word, the students of the college expressed their gratitude and contentment to the Prelate in a decent program. Natalie Kelkhatcherian recited “Father… Bless” by Taniel Varoujan, Tro Mirzayan sang “My Father from Childhood,” Rita Gragian recited “We are Little” by Jack S. Hagopian Nancy Solakian presented a dance (“The Deer of Kharapagh”), while Angelina Sarkissian recited “The Armenian Spirit” by Hamasdegh.

Afterwards, the Prelate, Bishop Shahe Panossian, was invited to deliver his fatherly message.

The Prelate said that during the previous month he had the opportunity to be introduced to the older generation of the Diaspora, and it was time to be introduced to the younger generation who is the guarantee of our future. “The young generation who is acquiring knowledge and education at present will guide our life in the future and will be in responsible posts,” he added.

In his message, the Prelate mentioned that it wasn’t a coincidence that he had started his series of visits to National schools by visiting first Levon and Sophia Hagopian Armenian College because the college being located in the heart of Bourj Hammoud has a unique identity and atmosphere, and the live example for that was that day’s program. “This is the first visit, and in the future there will be additional visits so as to be in close contact with the students and to be introduced to the worries and anticipations of the new generation,” concluded the Prelate.

At the end, the Prelate left the college with the anticipation of newer successes in the academic life of the students.

In the realm of the preparations of the 50th jubilee of Levon and Sophia Hagopian Armenian College, the second and third meetings for the former graduates of the college took place on December 4 and 11; the meetings gathered 90 graduates of the years 1986 to 2013. Previously, a separate meeting had taken place for the graduates of 1968 to 1985; there were 60 graduates present at that meeting.

During those meetings, a DVD, prepared on the occasion of the 50th jubilee, was displayed showing the heartwarming words of former teachers of the college addressed to their students. In his turn, the principal informed the former graduates about the activities of the jubilee (preparation of DVDs and a book, an art night, and a dinner gala for the jubilee). It was also mentioned that the following meeting would be on March 6, on the occasion of Teacher’s Day, where the former graduates of the college would meet with their former teachers in a memorable meeting.

At the end of the meetings, the presence gathered around the reception tables and recalled with one another the past sweet memories of their school days inside the college.

On Sunday, December 1, the games of LEVAM launched with the mini marathon. Eight students from the college participated in this marathon.

At the end of the 3 km distance, the college won three medals – two silver and one bronze – by Setrag Garabedian (1995 births), Nareg Aslanian and Garo Shadoyan (1996-1998 births).

A group of students from the secondary section of the college accompanied by their Armenian teacher, Mrs. Madlen Vartanian, visited the writer Shahantoukhd and passed two memorable hours with her on November 15.

The occasion of the visit was the award that the first winner group of the general knowledge competition on Translation Day had received from the administration of the college. Ten other students from Grades 10 and 11 accompanied the five members of the group.

By visiting Shahantoukhd, the students recited to the writer verses from her poems. Then, by asking some questions, they were introduced to the writer’s creative world, to her main works, and to the sources of her inspiration.

With all happiness and love, Shahantoukhd welcomed the representatives of the new generation who appreciated literature and advised them to remain steadfast to the imperishable values of the Armenian people, literature, and culture.

At the end of the visit, the students congratulated her decoration with the medal of “Movses Khorenatzi” by the president of Armenia, and they presented her a bouquet of flowers on that occasion.

Greatly touched by the visit of the students, Shahantoukhd wrote her impressions in “Aztag” newspaper in a special writing (“Aztag,” November 29, 2013, P. 5).

In the realm of the celebrations for the fiftieth jubilee of the college, the first meeting for the students of Levon and Sophia Hagopian College was dedicated to the graduates of the college between the years 1968 to 1985 and which took place on Wednesday, November 27.

A big number of former students of the college were present in the meeting, and they passed two memorable hours in the college recollecting the past sweet memories with their former classmates. Graduates from 1968 were present; representatives from the graduates of the 1970s were also present who found each other after many years and had the chance to enjoy their time there.

Throughout the meeting, pictures from the old days of the students in the college were being displayed on a big screen. On this occasion, the principal, Mr. Vicken Avakian, presented the aim of the meeting, the list of the celebrations for the fiftieth jubilee, and the committees that would work it out. The principal named in his word the big number of educational figures, editors, cultural workers, medical doctors, and prominent figures who were graduates from the college. He stressed that the college that has provided man power in all fields of the Armenian society is also accomplishing its mission by providing young and promising men to our national Armenian institutions and bodies.

After the principal’s word, former graduates from the college expressed their warm feelings and appreciated greatly the initiative of the principal to celebrate the fiftieth jubilee in its best way. They also showed their readiness to support the activities of the fiftieth jubilee.

The surprise of the meeting was presenting parts from the 50th jubilee DVD. The DVD included hearty words from former educators of the college to their dear college and students.

On Tuesday, November 26, representatives from youth associations in Artzakh and Chavakhk visited the college and had a meeting with the students of Grades 10 and 11. Those representatives were in Lebanon because of an invitation from the Lebanese Youth Association of Armenian Revolutionary Federation.

Vahak Dadayan and Ashod Baboyan represented to the students the general state of the youngsters in Artzakh and Chavakhk and the problems that they were encountering.

A display of a DVD accompanied the meeting.

During the past week, the college welcomed the representatives of both Haigazian and LAU universities who introduced the students of Grades 11, 12, and BT3 to the majors, the conditions of registration, and the facilities of getting scholarships in these two universities.

During the meeting and through the many questions, the students got enough information about issues and questions which interested them.

On Thursday, November 21, the college celebrated the Lebanese Independence Day in a unique way. In the morning and after the prayer, the flag ceremony took place accompanied by the Lebanese anthem, after which the students entered the hall of the college in the presence of the principal and the teacher’s staff.

A Grade 12 student, Harout Avedissian, on behalf of the Student Council of the college, gave a speech in Arabic. Then, the classes, with representatives from each class, were divided into 5 groups each bearing the name of one of the cities of Lebanon (Beirut, Byblos, Baalback, Sidon, and Tyre.)

A general knowledge competition took place in Arabic. The questions were set and presented by the history teacher in the college, Mrs. Najla Adas. The jury consisted of teachers from the college: Miss Nouha Yammin, Mrs. Lina Nasri, and Mrs. Rula Youness. The questions were made of three sections: one section related to the independence of Lebanon, the second about Lebanese prominent figures, and the last one about current Lebanese issues.

Beirut group won the general knowledge competition.

On Friday, November 15, Kalin Megerditchian, a university student from Gogigian Fund, visited the college and talked to the students of Grades 7 and 8 about nature preservation.

By using the power point, Megerditchian pointed the importance of preserving the environment to the students and mentioned all the means that we can make use of in our daily lives so as not to waste the sources of nature.

Gogigian Fund has initiated a campaign to preserve nature, and concerning this issue it is going to set special boxes in all schools so that students throw their used papers in them. Later, those papers with the help of the municipality will be collected and taken to recycling factories.

On Monday, November 11, Professor Etig Minassian, the Head of the History Department at Yerevan State University, and Mher Hovhannessian, the vice-president of Armenology Research Fund at the same university, visited the college and had a meeting with the secondary students of the college.

The meeting was an occasion so that the students of the college get introduced to the Armenology section of Yerevan State University in general and to the Armenian History specialization in particular.

The guest lecturers presented generally Yerevan State University, which has existed for 94 years, its website, and the possibilities of continuing university education in Armenia. They also mentioned that at present they were involved in preparing Armenian history books for the Armenians at Diaspora, so they had resorted to the students to ask them what kind of books they wished to have.

Students proposed some ideas. There was also a lecture-debate about the concept of having a modern book after which the guest lecturers left the college after taking a group picture with the presence.

In the realm of his visit to Lebanon, Vahe Berberian, a former graduate from Levon and Sophia Armenian College, playwright, painter, and artist, visited the college on Friday, November 1.

The administration had prepared few surprises to the former student of the college. The first was a meeting with his classmates; two classmates only, Garo Arabaghlian and Hagop Zakarian, who were graduates with Berberian during the academic year 1972-1973, were in Lebanon and were invited by the administration. As a result, it was a very touchy meeting, the reunion of these three classmates in the same place where they had passed their best teenage years.

After his meeting with the principal, Board of Trustees, and classmates, Vahe Berberian had a meeting with the students of his dear college. By reading parts from his books by the accompaniment of the piano, students welcomed the guest. They read parts which represented recollections from Vahe’s student life, and in general they were thoughts about books and reading. All were taken from his books, “Letters from Zaatar” and “In the Name of God and His Son.”

After the students’ performance, the principal of the college, Mr. Vicken Avakian, welcomed Vahe Berberian and appreciated his ability in discovering the follies of our life, analyzing them, and making people realize them through his one-man shows. “The first step in self-correction is recognizing personal follies,” said the principal by adding that, “Vahe Berberian is the driving artist who leads us to correct ourselves. He is a real phenomenon in our time.”

At the end of his word, the principal presented a second surprise to the guest when he presented the group picture of his class in 1969 and samples from his report cards during his academic years in Sophia Hagopian. The Board of Trustees, in his turn, honored the guest with a souvenir, an honor that he deserved for keeping the reputation of the college very high around the world through his presentations and artistic performances.

Then, Vahe Berberian ascended the stage with a very touched mood. He expressed his thankfulness for the honor and respect which were endowed to him. He said that he owed to his teachers and to the college the ability to read books and to have critical thinking. With his unique style, he remembered incidents which had happened during his student life with classmates and teachers.

Vahe Berberian talked about his intimacy with the world of books and advised the students to keep away from the shallow games of the internet if they wanted to succeed in life, to get educated, and to have wide horizons, and “to read books, to read literature to enrich our minds and souls.”

At the end of the meeting, Vahe Berberian answered the many questions that the students had for him. Then, he left the college after being photographed by the students.

After three days from the beginning of the academic year 2013-2014, the first parent meeting took place in the presence of more than 175 parents on Friday, September 27, 2013.

At the beginning of the meeting, the parents watched the DVD presenting the activities that had taken place during the previous academic year. The new parents were introduced to the academic, pedagogical, and extracurricular activities of the college while the older ones recalled the great contributions of the college in which their children had a big role in those achievements by getting various awards.

After the DVD display, the principal of the college, Mr. Vicken Avakian, presented to the parents the main principles of the academic, disciplinary, and administrative activities. Then, he referred to the new procedures that the college has adopted to raise the academic standard of the college and advised parents to show maximum parent-college cooperation to have a successful academic year.

In his word, the principal mentioned that besides the current academic curriculum, the college has organized free afternoon sessions for languages and mathematics. During the summer, the college also organized a session to prepare the intermediate students for their make-up exams; secondary students took that responsibility. In addition to that, students from the college participated in a special session set for Brevet and Grade 12 students who had the chance to participate in the second session of the governmental exams; the session took place in the college and was organized by the Educational Council and the National Technical School.

On this occasion, the principal said that as the previous year a big number of Syrian-Armenian students are attending the college this year. 60 new students have joined the college in different classes which shows parents’ positive attitude and trust in the mission of the college.

At the end of the meeting, the principal introduced the parents to the new teachers that joined the teaching staff and wished a successful academic year to all.

Levon and Sophia Hagopian Armenian College regained its vivacious student life on Tuesday, September 24 after three months of summer vacation. With the morning bell, classmates found one another, met with old and new teachers, and with wishes for a successful year started their new academic year 2013-2014.

At 8 o’clock in the morning, and after checking the presence of the students and indicating the students’ classrooms, the students accompanied with their teachers went to St. Karasoun Manoug Church to get the Holy Communion.

Later, they returned to the college and gathered in the hall where they watched the DVD about the activities that had taken place during the previous academic year in the college. The principal, after the DVD display, invited the 52 new students of Grade 7 to ascend the stage and presented them breast pins which symbolized the slogan of the college. The new students were welcomed by the clapping of the rest wishing them smooth and successful 6-year education at the college.

Then the principal presented the number one circular. In a word addressed to the students, the principal referred to the important points of circular number one and stressed mainly on the means of achieving good academic results. He stressed not only on the importance of concentrated, serious, and consistent hard working but also on the necessity of having ideal manners. The principal also mentioned that the college would celebrate its 50th anniversary in 2014, and that the students would participate in the success of some public activities.

After the principal’s word, the students started their new academic year with high moods.

The general meeting for the teachers’ staff indicated the beginning of the academic year 2013-2014. The meeting took place at 10 a.m. in the hall of the college on Saturday, September 21, 2013.

The objective of the meeting was to prepare a complete academic file that would be consisted of the main subjects that are taught at the college during the six years of education in it, the pedagogical principles, and the means and the ways of applying them.

At the beginning of the meeting, the principal, Mr. Vicken Avakian, by welcoming the teachers, wished a good and a fruitful academic year to all, and then he explained the importance of preparing an academic file as a basic guideline for the activities of the coming days.

As a result, the teachers were divided into six major groups according to the subjects that they teach.- teachers of Armenology subjects, teachers of Arabic subjects, teachers of the English language, teachers of mathematics, teachers of physics, and teachers of chemistry and biology. Each group prepared a written report about the academic programs of the teachers from Grades 7 to 12, the difficulties that the teachers faced, and the proposed solutions for those problems.

After the group work, the teachers, Rula Khoury (English), Nouha Yammin (Arabic), Madlene Vartanian (Armenian), Vahakn Tashjian (physics), Vatche Boulghourjian (mathematics), and Shant Dzadirian (chemistry and biology), presented their work. After a short discussion, the principal announced the formation of a committee of teachers that would study and edit the reports within two months and present them in their final forms during the second teachers’ meeting as a confirmation for the reports.

The second part of the meeting dealt with the results of the college during the official exams of Grades 9 and 12. First, a comparative study was made by the use of the power point between the results of the trial exams and that of the official ones, and then the percentages of success according to each subject and to each grade were presented. A comparative study was also done between the results of last year and the previous years.

After discussing the results of the official exams, the principal gave some pieces of advice to improve the results of those exams. On that occasion, he announced that henceforth Mrs. Rita Hovhannessian and Miss Zepure Nenejian would work as educational responsible in the college to follow up closely the preparatory stages for the official exams for the students of Grades 9 and 12.

At the end of the first general meeting of the teachers, the principal made some educational, disciplinary, and administrative announcements. He also mentioned that 2014 was the 50th anniversary of the college, so a number of celebrations would take place in Lebanon and abroad.

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A wonderful serenity has taken possession of my entire soul, like these sweet mornings of spring which I enjoy with my whole heart. I am alone, and feel the charm of existence in this spot, which was created for the bliss of souls like mine.

I am so happy, my dear friend, so absorbed in the exquisite sense of mere tranquil existence, that I neglect my talents. I should be incapable of drawing a single stroke at the present moment; and yet I feel that I never was a greater artist than now.

When, while the lovely valley teems with vapour around me, and the meridian sun strikes the upper surface of the impenetrable foliage of my trees, and but a few stray gleams steal into the inner sanctuary, I throw myself down among the tall grass by the trickling stream; and, as I lie close to the earth, a thousand unknown plants are noticed by me: when I hear the buzz of the little world among the stalks, and grow familiar with the countless indescribable forms of the insects and flies, then I feel the presence of the Almighty, who formed us in his own image.

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