When TUMO Yerevan launched in 2011, no one fully understood what they would ultimately be signing up to learn. From the earliest days, however, there was a body of students who were ready to discover the unknown without any hesitation. Anahit is one of those students, who at the age of 21 has managed to become a guru in a range of TUMO learning areas, to study at UWC Dilijan and the Watson Institute at Lynn University, intern at the IPM Group and eventually return to Yerevan.
Initially, many people think of TUMO as a place where students acquire technical skills and become familiar with the types of subjects that they would otherwise not have had access to. Anahit, however, says that TUMO is not just a location for gaining technical knowledge. “Every time I’m asked to talk about TUMO, I tell people to imagine entering an environment without any preliminary background and being given complete educational freedom, resources and endless opportunities to explore and create.”
Anahit during her years as a TUMO student
Anahit’s thirst for creative exploration landed her in TUMO’s graphic design workshop. “Although I no longer work in design, this experience was my first serious dive into a discipline that I was entirely unfamiliar with. It’s enormously rewarding to create something from scratch. In TUMO workshops, I understood that every subject is comprehendible and conquerable, so long as you have the drive and you work with a team”
Anahit’s graphic design learning lab results
After studying at TUMO for five years, Anahit was accepted into the prestigious UWC Dilijan boarding school. “It’s not a coincidence that the first time I heard about UWC Dilijan and decided to apply was at TUMO. It was here that I learned how to seek out opportunities and achieve my goals.”
After graduating from high school, Anahit was accepted into the Watson Institute at Lynn University. “TUMO also taught me to appreciate unconventional pedagogical approaches. That’s why, when I was searching for colleges, I chose an institution that had an incubator approach. In that system, you enter with a project idea and graduate with a business plan. During my college years, I hoped to work in the type of entrepreneurial field where I would have a positive impact.” Prior to returning to Armenia, Anahit interned as a junior analyst at the IPM Group asset management firm.
Anahit’s student years at UWC and the Watson Institute
Anahit had so many future plans that were still in the works, that she couldn’t pick just one to share with us. Instead, she discussed her approach to crafting a career path: “Rather than focusing on the source of income, I prefer to understand what I’m creating and contributing to.”
Anahit’s first job was at TUMO, at the age of 17, as a learning labs coordinator.
The main photo features Anahit in 2016, from TUMO’s 5-year Anniversary campaign.