AGBU is an association of reference whose credibility is well established. Its worldwide network and professionalism allow us to envision and implement ambitious actions to unite the young Armenian generation.
Anouche Torossian is a Strategy and Management Consultant at Sia Partners, is the chair of the AGBU Young Professionals of Paris since February 2021. Part of the global network of AGBU Young Professionals committed to preserving and promoting the Armenian identity and heritage,YP Paris brings together young Armenian professionals in France. We sat down with Anouche to learn about her involvement with AGBU and her plans with YP Paris.
How did you get involved with AGBU and why were you drawn to the organization?
I took my first steps in the Armenian community by attending the Mekhitarian Varjaran – Samuel Moorat Armenian College in Sèvres – when I was seven years old. I went there twice a week every Wednesday and Saturday to learn Armenian but also dance, history, culture and traditional songs. I made my first friendships there and stayed until my graduation year, when I took Armenian in the baccalaureate.
As a young adult, I always followed the activities of AGBU Paris, especially by attending after work events and conferences. Knowing well the former YP president, Hermine Samuelian, I was delighted when she proposed me to take over from her to lead the community of young professionals in Paris. AGBU is an association of reference whose credibility is well established. Its worldwide network and professionalism allow us to envision and implement ambitious actions to unite the young Armenian generation. It’s also easy to connect with the different representations of the organisation in France, such as Lyon, Valence, Nice or Marseille but also with the several offices worldwide, whether in New-York, Beirut or Yerevan. It is very enriching to be able to create these links and dialogue between young Armenians from all over the world.
What are the different Armenian programs in which you have participated?
I am very involved in the Land and Culture Organisation, of which my mother was a member of the Board of Directors for a long time. The objective of the association is to work for the safeguard and preservation of the Armenian cultural heritage in the whole Middle East region. I had the chance to travel twice to Kessab in Syria, to participate in the renovation of the Chouchi hospital in Artsakh as well as in the restoration of a church in a village of Siunik in Armenia. This summer, I will actively participate in an educational campaign with children living in remote villages of Armenia.
Could you describe the projects you would like to carry out in the future with the AGBU Young Professionals of Paris?
Our project with the Young Professionals of Paris team is to develop three areas of focus in the coming months: to relaunch the agenda of events after the long parenthesis caused by the Covid-19 crisis to allow young Armenians to meet, to get together and to exchange during fun and instructive events; to set up new initiatives dedicated to high school and university students to help them build their academic and professional careers (orientation forum, tutoring, sharing of internship or job opportunities); and finally, to have our eyes turned towards Armenia and cooperate in particular with the young generation of talents there.
What is one thing about AGBU that you wished people knew?
AGBU’s positioning is very open and allows everyone to engage with the Armenian community in various ways, whether through humanitarian actions, sports, entrepreneurial projects or festive events. It is enough to step in it to realize that it is a large and welcoming family.
How has your involvement with the Armenian community shaped who you are with your family, your friends and in your career?
On a daily basis, my dual Armenian and French culture brings me a balance that I experience as a great strength. This commitment to the Armenian community seems natural and necessary to me, and I think it will guide me throughout my life. It seems to me that there is no more motivating and powerful struggle than to work to preserve our cultural heritage and to work for the future of the diaspora and Armenia. The future is in our hands, the hands of the younger generation. The philosophy behind the AGBU Young Professionals network is precisely to stimulate and orchestrate this positive energy.