WATERTOWN — St. Stephen’s Armenian Elementary School (SSAES) held a grand opening ceremony for its recently completed building project, located at 46 Elton Ave., on Sunday, October 14.
The event, which marked the completion of the largest building project supporting the Greater-Boston Armenian community in the last 20 years, provided an opportunity for the school board and administration to thank all the volunteers, partners and donors who gave their time and financial support to realize the project.
The newly-expanded nursery school building includes the addition of a new, 6,000-square-foot, two-story structure encompassing new classrooms, a learning center as well as indoor and outdoor recreation areas.
The project was funded solely by donations, which allowed the school to cover the cost of the project without the need to use its endowment fund or incur any debt. The primary donors, Noubar and Anna Afeyan, the Mirak Family, the Bilezikian Family and Aurelian and Anahid Mardiros, were all recognized with certificates of merit from the Prelacy of the Armenian Church of America. Archbishop Oshagan Choloyan,
Prelate, handed out the certificates. Noubar Afeyan, for whose family the new building is named and who has been a longstanding supporter of the school, took the opportunity to commend the achievements of the school and highlight the importance of supporting Armenian education in the diaspora.
The financial generosity of the community was coupled with the support of volunteers, including Ara Krafian, CEO of the design and engineering firm SMMA, who designed the new building and oversaw the abbreviated construction process. His father, Yervant Krafian, was one of the founding members of the school 28 years ago.