Amalya is a young woman from Lori, whose life had changed dramatically at a very young age. Her eyesight deteriorated when she was still in high school and as a result, had to continue her education in a school for people with special needs. But she never let that stop her.
Amalya and her parents were born in Tashir in 1992, but her grandparents are from Alashkert in Western Armenia. She spent her childhood in the Lori region’s beautiful nature and its Alpine clear mountains, enjoying the warmth of her friends and neighbors.
In 2007, when she was in the 8th grade, she transferred from Secondary School No.1 in Tashir to Yerevan’s No.14 School for people with special needs. She now lives in Yerevan with her mother and sisters. Her father passed away when they were very young and her librarian mother had to divide her time between her profession and her children.
In the beginning, it was difficult for Amalya to adapt to the new school system, because she was not familiar with the Braille alphabet. Despite the challenges and the restrictions she faced, she learned how to read and write in Braille in a very short period of time.
During that time, an engineer from the Mergelyan Institute created a new program called “Arev”, which also helped Amalya access a computer and the Internet in order to be able to continue her education in school. Arev means sun in Armenian.
“The sun of goodness lives in each one of us. It’s the conscience of the world. Many of us keep it inside of ourselves so that we won’t get tired from the hardships of life. Only a few people are able to share their warmth and bring in joy in the lives of others. One of those people is my teacher,” says Amalya.
Amalya studied Armenian language, world history, and literature in school. She also learned English. She has received many literary awards in school and her dream ever since childhood has always been to become a writer. In order to fulfill her dream, she wanted to improve her knowledge of Armenian history and therefore enrolled in the history courses offered with the Armenian Virtual College, which she had found out about in 2010 on the Internet.
“It was difficult for me to attend lectures at a university every day. That is the reason AVC was the best option for me. I chose to enroll in the Armenian history courses, because that is very close to my heart. I wanted to learn the proud pages of the history of my ancient people,” she said.
According to Amalya, AVC provides students the opportunity to complete a very good education. “The curriculum is very rich and I cannot wait for the next academic term,” she says. At AVC, Amalya’s teachers say that she always completed her homework with great pleasure and satisfaction, and the online discussions with her tutors were extremely interesting.
“After graduation, I want to transfer my credits from AVC to an academic institution abroad and continue my education,” Amalya says. “I hope that more people will continue to benefit from AVC in the future.”
By Harout Ekmanian