Armenian Heritage Month Announcement

(Left) Armenian ancient eternity symbol; (Center) A woman wearing traditional garb holding a pomegranate which is the Armenian mythological symbol for life and abundance. (Right) Armenian Genocide Memorial with the eternal flame, in remembrance of the 1.5 million massacred victims, Yerevan, Armenia.

Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) celebrates Armenian Heritage & History Month 2024 by honoring and highlighting the diverse culture, heritage, and contributions of Armenian Americans throughout history. We encourage our community to study, observe, and celebrate this vibrant community and its rich heritage. This nationally recognized month pays homage to the traditions, cuisine, artistic expressions, languages, people, culture, and stories of Armenian communities.   


Honoring Armenian Heritage & History Month 

President Biden officially recognized the Armenian Genocide on April 24, 2021. In various states, American Armenians designate April as Armenian Heritage and History month for fostering awareness and education, in alignment with Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day on April 24th. 

This initiative aims to acknowledge and celebrate the profound cultural, historical, and societal contributions of Armenian Americans. It serves as a symbolic tribute to the enduring resilience, ingenuity, and impact of the Armenian people across generations in America, offering a platform to share and honor their deep-rooted, millennia-old cultural heritage. 


STEM Scholar Highlights:  


Hovhannes Adamian, Pioneer of Color Television 

Nubar Afeyan, Inventor, Entrepreneur, Philanthropist, Co-Founder Moderna 

Diran Apelian, Metallurgist and Sustainability Pioneer; Alcoa-Howmet Professor of Engineering and Founder of Metal Processing Institute WPI 

Emik Avakian, Inventor of Disability Appliances 

Arthur Bulbulian, Inventor of Oxygen Mask 

Raymond Damadian, Scientist and Inventor of MRI 

Richard Donchian, Pioneer of Technical Commodity Trading 

Albert Kapikian, Virologist, Founded Rotavirus Vaccine 

Anna Kazanjian Longobardo, Pioneer for Women in Engineering 

Varaztad Kazanjian, Founding Father of Modern Plastic Surgery 

Edward Keonjian, Father of Microelectronics 

Alex Manoogian, Inventor of the Delta Faucet 

Cyrus Melikian, Inventor- Coffee Vending Machine 

Asatour Sarafian, Father of Automatic Transmission 

Luther George Simjian, Inventor of the Automated Teller Machine (ATM) 

Stephen Stepanian, Inventor of Elevator, Conveyor, Concrete Mixing Truck 

Michel Ter-Pogossian, Medical Physicist 


Armenian History and Recent Events:  



On April 24th, 1915, hundreds of Armenian intellectuals were arrested by Turkish officials, thus marking the start of the Armenian Genocide. Following the arrests were systematic deportations and mass killings, which resulted in the deaths of over a million and a half Armenians and hundreds of thousands of Greeks and Assyrians. To this very day, the Turkish government continues to deny the atrocities that they are responsible for, while also continuing to contribute to the ethnic cleansing of Armenians in Artsakh. Despite happening over a hundred years ago, the Armenian Genocide has had long-lasting and profound effects on Armenians, who have dispersed globally, including the United States, because of the first genocide of the 20th century.   



The Artsakh War of 2020 saw the resurgence of ethnic cleansing in the South Caucasus region, particularly in the contested territory of Nagorno-Karabakh (Artsakh). Azerbaijani forces, with support from Turkey, engaged in a campaign targeting Armenian civilians, with reports of widespread atrocities including killings, forced displacement, and destruction of cultural heritage sites. This deliberate attempt to erase Armenian footprint from the region intensified the humanitarian crisis and deepened historical wounds. The ethnic cleansing of indigenous Armenians during the Artsakh War underscores the urgent need for international intervention to protect the indigenous civilian population and uphold human rights in conflict zones. 

On Campus Event April 24: 

Join WPI’s Armenian Students Association in the viewing of The Promise on April 24 at 6PM in Fuller Labs (Lower). Enjoy authentic Armenian treats while you watch the movie! 

Movie Synopsis: Brilliant medical student Michael (Oscar Isaac) meets beautiful dance instructor Ana (Charlotte Le Bon) in late 1914. Their shared Armenian heritage sparks an attraction that explodes into a romantic rivalry between Michael and Ana's boyfriend (Christian Bale), an American photojournalist who's dedicated to exposing the truth. As the Ottoman Empire crumbles into war-torn chaos, their conflicting passions must be deferred as they join forces to get themselves and their people to safety.


Read, Learn, Watch, Explore, and Visit: 

Read Armenian Legacy in America- A 400-Year Heritage 

Read “Yankees of the East”- The Racial History of 2oth Century America Through the Eyes of Worcester Armenians and Their Descendants 

Read Who She Left Behind 

Read A Shameful Act, by Taner Akçam 

Learn Timeline of Armenian-Americans 

Learn History of Armenian-Americans 

Learn Armenian Genocide Museum 

Learn WPI Armenia Project Center 

Learn Pomegranates - Another Symbolic Fruit of Armenia 

Learn History of Eternity Symbol 

Watch Commemorating the Armenian Genocide at the State House 

Watch Yerevan, Armenia Travel Guide 

Watch 10 Best Places to Visit in Armenia 

Explore 16 Cool Facts about Armenia 

Explore Ancient Armenia 

Visit Armenian Heritage Park, Boston 

Visit Armenian Museum of America, Watertown 

Visit Armenian Church of Our Savior, Worcester 




The Office of Diversity, Inclusion, and Multicultural Education (ODIME) promotes and oversees all student facing diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging (DEIB) learning experiences, programs, services, trainings, and initiatives for WPI.