Berkeley engineering professor leads Armenian university

Armen Der Kiureghian

Armen Der Kiureghian (UC Berkeley photo)

The new president of a UC-run university in Armenia is Armen Der Kiureghian, a UC Berkeley civil engineering professor who has taken a leave from campus to pitch in with the collective University of California effort to help build up the American University of Armenia.

Der Kiureghian told the San Francisco Chronicle, “Armenia is a very old country — almost like an open-air museum with churches and monasteries going back to the fourth century. But there’s no gate and no ticket to buy. We’re hoping that some American students will be interested in studying at an American university abroad. We’d be a natural.”

The university holds to high standards, he is quoted as saying: “The diploma is accredited by the same organization that accredits Berkeley and Stanford.”

The University of California mostly runs the university, which started accepting undergraduates last year, according to the story. Among UC professors, administrators and retirees involved are Aimée Dorr, UC’s provost, and eight others who are on its board of trustees.

Why is UC involved? Read the full story: “UC helps build resources, revenue at private Armenian university.”