Armenia Alumni Update: Asya Kara-Gevorgyan

Asya and a fellow Global UGRAD, Malika, take a selfie.

Life always finds ways to surprise me. Even while writing this, I am thinking about how lucky I am to be a part of the Global UGRAD family. Ever since the program, my life has changed. And not only this, but my view on things, people, relationships, and challenges in life has changed too. My Global UGRAD family helped me make a self-evolution that led to where I am now.

Coming back from the United States nearly a year ago was, without any exaggeration, a great struggle. I had culture shock in nearly everything. Even the old relationships seemed different. I was still feeling myself in that melting pot. It got even worse when I understood that everything had definitely changed. That realization gave me life lessons that I couldn’t be more grateful for. The final push for me was when I lost my dad 6 months ago. It was a life changing day. My new reality that only gave me anxiety and depression that I thought was here to stay. But, remembering all the words, motivation, stories from those wonderful days in DC, I knew that even in the hardest days, there is still a light hidden somewhere. And you know what? That was true. That light was indeed waiting to be found.

After failed attempts of finding a job, I finally got lucky and was on cloud nine when I got the chance to do the “Student Ambassador Program” in Gyumri, Armenia. This is a very good program for the region that will help students and all interested people learn more about the steps leading to international student life. This has been a blast for me, as I got to do what I loved the most: help people find themselves and give speeches. I guess the most fun, and at the same time emotional part, was when I was talking about my personal, life-changing experience in the U.S. And when I was looking at their shining faces, I knew that I did something right. There are yet exciting moments to come, as soon, I’m going to give the students their certificates and see those shining and ready-for-bright-future faces again. Hopefully, my example will help them find their destined path in life and go for it.

I still remember that moment I had in Niagara Falls. That was the first place we visited with my Global UGRAD sisters. I was feeling like I had the whole world in the palm of my hand and I had the power to make a difference and make an impact in not just my life but also the whole world. I knew that the moment is going to be stuck in my mind forever and would always guide me in life. And this is still with me. Still going strong.

So, with the words of my favorite speaker, I want to thank all the amazing people who made this happen for us. He always says, “When life knocks you down, try to land on your back, because if you can look up, you can get up!” Global UGRAD helped me when I was down. Those amazing people helped me and my fellow Global UGRADs see the life from a different angle, and be where we are now. Thank you, my family, for the best experience in my life. Thank you for helping me get beck up my feet! Thank you for helping me find myself.

Written by Asya Kara-Gevorgyan (Armenia), Global UGRAD 2016-17, Keuka College