What is TUMO?
At TUMO Center for Creative Technologies, technology and art merge to provide teens everything they need to give them a competitive edge in a digital world. Thousands of students gather at the center where they have all the tools and resources to develop the skills they need to succeed in their future. With access to state of the art technology and the chance to learn directly from some of the world's leading professionals in web design, robotics, animation, film and much more, TUMO teens are encouraged to tap into their entrepreneurial intuitions to create and expand the boundaries of today's cutting edge industries.
Where did the name TUMO come from?
Our flagship center sits at the end of Yerevan's Tumanyan Park named for the Armenian children's author and advocate, Hovhannes Tumanyan. Tumanyan Park—known to many as "Tumo"—inspired the name for the program dedicated to enriching and educating children.
How was TUMO founded?
TUMO was born from the imagination of Sam and Sylva Simonian. Born and raised in Beirut, the Simonians moved to the United States as teenagers. Sam enrolled in the engineering program at the University of Texas at Arlington and went on to co-found a leading telecommunications company, Inet. The Simonians have always noted the significant contributions Armenian organizations made to their education and success over the years and have made it a personal endeavor to extend that gift to the current generation of bright and motivated Armenians. As such, The Simonian Foundation fully funds the TUMO Center in Yerevan, its programs, the adjoining plaza, and the revitalization of Tumanyan Park. Sam and Sylva are intimately involved at TUMO, with Sam lending his expertise on technology and its economic impact and Sylva contributing to the center's engagement with the environment and the program's unique curriculum.
Where is TUMO?
There are currently four TUMO locations throughout Armenia. In the summer of 2011, the Simonian Educational Foundation unveiled its first center in Armenia's capital, Yerevan. With the support of the Central Bank of Armenia, TUMO opened its second center in Dilijan, Armenia in 2013. In partnership with the Armenian General Benevolent Union (AGBU) the center has expanded to two critical locations: Gyumri, Armenia and Stepanakert, Nagorno-Karabakh. To be part of the movement write to us at [email protected]
What do the students learn?
We offer four main focus areas:
  • Animation
  • Game Development
  • Web Design
  • Filmmaking
In addition to these four major areas, we also offer education in a
variety of complementary fields which serve to enrich the students’
overall educational experience. These complementary fields are the
  • Graphic Design
  • 3D Modeling
  • Programming
  • Online Literacy
  • Robotics
  • Music
  • Drawing
  • Writing
  • Photography
Students pick a combination of focus areas and complementary fields,
based on their own interests, which they will then use to construct
their individual learning adventures.
How do the students learn?
Glad you asked. The TUMO learning system is designed to be flexible so that each student has the chance to learn about what they love, but also structured enough to ensure that they create their own, reachable goals. Students navigate through their own personal learning plans via the TUMO Path, a special learning interface that prepares them for hands-on practice. The Path is a smart app with elements of artificial intelligence. With the help of this new platform, students pick from thousands of possible combinations of workshops and independent learning activities and construct their own learning plan, which adapts over time to fit each student's evolving preferences, rate of progress and achievements. As they progress through the Path, they can also participate in workshops and learning labs which complement what the TUMO teens learn during their independent learning. (For more info on the workshops and learning labs, see FAQ 7.) Guest lectures and community events also give students a chance to enrich and supplement the knowledge they learn throughout the year. We aspire to motivate this generation to learn and encourage them to create new possibilities for themselves!
Who teaches the students?
Good question! The students work with two types of instructors. The first are TUMO staff members who teach the permanent and regularly scheduled workshops. These instructors also work year-round to develop and fine-tune the educational curriculum at TUMO. The second are those who are invited on a short-term basis to teach provisional learning labs. These instructors are leaders in their field and offer unique insight into the various educational areas taught at TUMO. This combination assures that students receive the benefits of regularly scheduled lessons while also taking advantage of the constant variation and new opportunities offered by the learning labs.
Can I lead my own learning lab?
Yes! We are always looking for experienced professionals to work with. If you are energetic and passionate about your field and want to work with some of Armenia's most motivated teens, please fill out a form and let's get started!
Who else works with the students?
We were hoping you’d ask. Aside from the workshop and learning lab leaders, the TUMO teens also have the constant support of the learning coaches. We’re not going to sugarcoat this. The coaches are awesome. They are young and enthusiastic people, many former TUMOians themselves, who are always around in case one of our students needs help with an activity, has a question about something they’re learning or just generally needs assistance with something. As soon as a student starts attending TUMO, they are assigned a coach so they know exactly who to go to in case of any questions.
Who can be a student?
If you register between the ages of 12 and 18, you can be a TUMO student! Seriously. That's it. You will need (1) a parent or guardian with you when you register (2) both your guardian and your birth certificate or passport
Is there any post-TUMO support for the students?
Of course. The skills gained at TUMO were never meant to be insular or purely theoretical but are intended to be taken and applied to the real world. That is why space in the TUMO Yerevan building, along with institutional support, is offered to TUMO startups founded by students or alums. We already have three startups: Marimba Games, Ardēan and Yelling Animation.
Are there programs for teens from abroad?
Yes! With much success, we've launched an initiative called Camp TUMO! Camp TUMO is a summer program that invites students from around the globe to come to Yerevan and take part in a jam-packed experience filled with education and fun. Teens are given the opportunity to take part in TUMO's learning system while immersing themselves in a new culture through guided tours and excursions. You can sign up here. For more information write to us at [email protected]
Is there anything available for non-TUMOians?
Though we don’t offer any workshops for non-students, TUMO does organize public events that are free and open to the community including Film Fridays, International Yoga Day and community lectures. In addition to these public events, we partner with different festivals, such as the Golden Apricot and ReAnimania, to co-organize and host some of their events. To find out more about what’s happening at TUMO, you can check out our upcoming events page. You can also follow us on Facebook and sign up for our weekly newsletter. Just send us an email to [email protected] and we will add your name and make sure you get all the latest and greatest news from TUMO. Plus, you can follow us on Twitter and Instragram @tumocenter for both. We like to keep things simple around here.
Do students get a diploma?
TUMO does not issue diplomas upon graduation. However, we help students develop a portfolio chockfull of all the projects and various workshops they've participated in. When they leave the center, we want them to be able not just to talk about their skills, but to also show them.
How much does it cost to attend TUMO?
TUMO is free of charge for all!
Really, it’s free?
Yes. Really.
How do I sign up?
All you need to do is call your local center and leave your full name, age, and phone number and we will call you back with a good time to come in and register.
  • Yerevan:
  • Dilijan:
  • Stepanakert: or
  • Gyumri: or
We look forward to meeting you!
Can I visit the center?

Of course! TUMO visiting hours are from 4 to 5 pm on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. To schedule a tour please fill out this request form OR send us a brief email. Please make sure that emails are sent 1 to 2 weeks before your preferred tour date.

Please be sure to include the following information in your email

  • Name
  • Country
  • Organization (if applicable)
  • Desired date of visit
  • Number of visitors
  • Purpose of the visit
  • We hope to see you soon!
What’s Armenia like?
Where do we start? Armenia is one of the few places in the world where you can visit a centuries-old monastery and attend a rock concert all in one day. The energy is high, the food is rich, the nightlife is vibrant and the people are warm and friendly.
Lastly, what exactly is a “TUMOian”?
It’s our term of endearment for our TUMO students. There’s the Californian and the Parisian. Now, there’s the TUMOian.