Her participation in Armenian cultural organizations is one of the factors that earned Tvene Baronian ’23 the Armenian Relief Society’s undergraduate scholarship for 2020. Students receive the scholarship based on merit, need and their involvement in the Armenian community.
As the daughter of Armenian immigrants who settled in the U.S. in 1990 to escape the civil war in Lebanon, Baronian has been involved in a range of organizations since she was in grade school, including the Armenian Youth Federation, Armenian National Committee of New Jersey, and several choirs and dance ensembles including Hamazkayin Arekag Choir and Hamazkayin Nayiri Dance Ensemble.
“The scholarship assistance is a source of pride for me because it will help further my academic career but also, and more importantly, it’s a recognition of my contribution and involvement in my community,” says Baronian, who has not yet declared a major.
Baronian was also recently tapped to write a series of articles titled “Beyond Motherhood” for The Armenian Weekly.
It was through her participation with the Armenian National Committee of America Eastern Region that Baronian learned about the work being done by the Armenian Weekly. “In my discussions with the team, I let them know of my interest in writing and they reached out to me, asking if I could help contribute to this amazing new series for the newspaper,” she says.
Adjunct Professor of Writing and Rhetoric Elizabeth Wells was not surprised to learn of Baronian’s writings nor scholarship. “She was one of the strongest students in my writer’s seminar this past year. [She is] tenacious about learning and improving her skills as a researcher and writer,” says Wells, noting that Baronian’s work is especially strong when she is writing about her cultural heritage.
“Her persistence and dedication were especially evident to me in her research and writing for my class on the Armenian genocide and the counter-culture of denial that has developed since that event,” Wells says. “Writing about her own experiences of protest against genocide denial and ignorance, Tvene demonstrated a lasting interest in learning about sociopolitical issues that matter to her.”
In the articles, Baronian delves into the lives of Armenian women who have excelled in politics, science and cultural leadership. “I find it extremely important to spread knowledge about these women because they show courage, strength and leadership through their actions, which has helped shape attitudes toward Armenian culture,” she says.