Fostering passion for STEM among rural schoolchildren of Armenia has become a paramount goal for FAR, and the recent STEM Camp for 25 students from Berd and Sisian regions of Armenia was a collaborative step towards preparing our youth for a promising future in the flourishing field of STEM.
Organized in partnership with "Hzor Mitk" NGO (Powerful Mind), this science camp brought together 25 (10th-12th grade) students, providing them with a warm and welcoming experience at the Students House of Yerevan. The camp not only allowed them to have fun, interact, and meet ANSEF scholars, Math Honor participants, and scientists from leading STEM related institutions and labs in Yerevan, but also encouraged them to discover interesting and exciting concepts through inquiry-based learning.
Meri Martirosayn, 18, from Berd region of Tavush province, who had previously participated in the FAR-supported Byurakan Science camp for two years in a row, shared her enthusiasm for the learning approach: "This way of learning is a big hit with us--high school students who are about to choose an academic path. At Byurakan Camp, we focused on physics and astronomy. While here, we get to explore chemistry, high technologies, medicine, and more. Learning by doing and discussing with scholars, exploring the medical university, has made these sessions so much fun that we don't even realize we're learning," she said, smiling. She also attributed her passion for learning to the supportive environment, particularly the chemistry/physics lab in her school, rejuvenated by FAR through the BCPP, which has increased her interest in STEM.
"You should never limit your opportunities; on the contrary, seek and find ways to expand your knowledge beyond school and university. Create networks with foreign students and open yourself up to new possibilities. Put more and more effort into learning," Aram Bughdaryan, a Math Honor program TA, encouraged the students during a meeting with the campers. He also emphasized the importance of nurturing young talents for Armenia’s security, stating: “Armenia needs brilliant young minds, especially for security concerns. By excelling in STEM, seeking new opportunities, and embracing failure without fear, we can demonstrate our mental prowess, making any thoughts of war against us unthinkable.”
The FAR’s Stem for Rural Armenia project was made possible by the generous support of Ara Cherchian from Wisconsin.