YEREVAN — The generosity of the Akian family toward the advancement of the American University of Armenia (AUA) knows no bounds. AUA benefactors and Pillars Zaven P. and Sonia Akian have been involved with AUA for decades, pouring their time, efforts, and financial resources to ensure that the University remains at the forefront of academic excellence in Armenia and the region. From AUA’s commensurate naming of the Zaven P. and Sonia Akian College of Science & Engineering to the recent establishment of the Akian BioScience Laboratory, in that same vein, the Akians recently announced a transformational $9 million gift to name the new AUA Science & Engineering building.

“Zaven P. and Sonia Akian’s support of the University has reached far and helped numerous bright students realize their dreams of obtaining an AUA education. But their contribution goes beyond supporting students — they are investors in the future of Armenia,” expounds Vice President of Development Gaiane Khachatrian.

As part of the Build a Better Future with AUA capital campaign, the University is seeking to accelerate progress and innovation where science, technology, and engineering play a transformative role bridged with the humanities, social sciences, and arts. To accommodate the doubled enrollment projected within the next five years, the University is rapidly expanding its campus. The new Science & Engineering building, to be named the Akian Family Building, will be part of a complex of structures, including a Humanities & Social Science building and a separate Arts building. The latter two will be named the Edward & Pamela Avedisian Building and Paruyr Sevak Building, respectively, perpetuating the most recent capital gift by the Avedisian family.

All three new buildings will be connected through an atrium, named the Founders’ Atrium, which will provide a meeting space for users of all three, with separate entrances into each building. The Akian Family Building is expected to measure approximately 80,000 square feet of usable space and will include space for research and experimentation in physical sciences and biophysics, in addition to classrooms, offices, auditoriums, and other intended uses. It is anticipated that the Building will be ready for occupancy by Fall 2027.

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