“I Never Imagined I Could Feel So Much Admiration For a Culture Other Than My Own” 03/26/2024

Noelia Rodas is one of approximately one hundred learners who have studied Armenian at the National University of Rosario (UNR), Argentina.


Two years ago, her sister, a regular student at UNR, informed her about the faculty’s language courses, which were open to the community. The courses were structured in a hybrid format, blending both online and on-site education. As a busy professional, Noelia had limited time for in-person courses, so this seemed like an excellent opportunity.


Among other languages, learning Armenian was also made possible at UNR, which made it the first university in Latin America to incorporate AGBU AVC’s courses into its curriculum when an agreement of cooperation was signed in 2021, marking the launch of the long-lasting partnership.


Interestingly, Noelia’s choice to enroll in the Armenian Language course was not influenced by any personal background story or Armenian heritage.


“Looking into the list of languages, the Armenian language caught my attention and brought to mind the memory of a radio program by journalist Alberto Lotuf when the 101th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide was commemorated. It was such a heartfelt speech that left me moved.”


That was her first nudge to start the course. Since then, Noelia has succesfully completed the two-year program of the Armenian Language course and become a proud alumnus.


Taking the AGBU AVC Hybrid Program courses has left Noelia in awe of the Armenian culture.


“I never imagined that I could feel so much admiration for a culture other than my own. I look forward to every Monday and Wednesday to share an hour and a half with Elena Achdjian, who is a unique teacher. She teaches us about the Armenian language and culture with a lot of love and patience, and the group of wonderful classmates makes me feel as if I were a descendant of Armenians.”


She is especially amazed by all the stories of her classmates’ ancestors, showcasing their struggle and courage to preserve their identity.

Prof. Elena Achdjian, in turn, describes the two-year journey with Noelia and her classmates as fruitful and valuable, “As a teacher, I feel very proud of being the bridge for UNR students to learn about the Armenian language and everything connected with Armenia. It was a wonderful experience. “They enjoyed and appreciated the value of another culture within the context of the language and also had the opportunity to connect and create bonds with others.” 

“I am grateful for the opportunity to study the Armenian Language with my instructor. And thanks to the UNR and Yervant Zorian, Founding President of the Armenian Virtual College, for sharing and continuing to preserve Armenian culture.”


AGBU AVC Hybrid Education Program is a mix of online and traditional education, combining the flexibility of an online self-study program with the support of on-site instructors, as well as offering various cultural gatherings and social events organized by online instructors. More than 66 schools and universities worldwide have already benefited from the Hybrid Program which is available in 8 languages of instruction.