By Bella Ishanyan
NEWTON, Mass. — Newton South High School hosted an Armenian Awareness Day on May 12 in order to bring light to the Armenian Genocide and exhibit Armenian culture. The four online programs had over 1,000 viewers.
Newton South hosts awareness days to provide a better understanding of topics often related to human rights. Led by rising sophomore, Charles Kouspakian, the Armenian Awareness Day was among the few student-initiated programs.
“We have these webinars every Wednesday, and I was really interested and I wanted to pretty much talk about Armenia, since Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day was coming up,” he said.
After a few weeks of planning, Kouspakian, Robert Parlin and Joana Chacon, teachers and faculty chairs on the South Human Rights Council, organized a program with six total speakers: Anais Astarjian, Martina Harutunian, Isabella Ishanyan, Kouspakian, Roxanne Makasdijian and Tsoleen Sarian. Collectively, they spoke about analysis of the genocide, the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, and shared personal stories and photographs.
Astarjian, co-chair of the Armenian Genocide Commemoration Committee and active participant in many other Armenian organizations, gave an overview of the genocide and analyzed the politics behind it, saying that her goal was to inform students about genocide, a topic not commonly discussed.