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Project Background

Gyumri-born creative Aghvan taught animation at Gyumri Information Technology Center (GITC) for 16 years. As some of you may know, GITC was founded by Fund for Armenian Relief (FAR) in 2005 to train up Gyumri’s next generation at no charge to them.

In 2018, Aghvan and his friend Hayk founded Popok Animation Studio. The friends’ goal was to develop the animation field in Gyumri and Armenia as a whole by producing amazing content and equipping talented young people with the skills they need to enter the fast-growing field. To do that, they decided to provide free high quality courses and pay high wages to the graduates they hired, incentivizing them to remain in Gyumri.

When Aghvan and Hayk first announced their competitive course, they received over 240 applications! After a tough selection process, the brightest applicants were accepted. Last year, 15 graduated from the first training pool. All of the graduates found animation jobs in Armenia and Aghvan himself hired seven. Popok has expanded so much that it had to rent a new and bigger office space to house its staff and students!

Through its 15-month course, Popok gives students a deep dive into animation that meets international training standards. This year, students have the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to learn from an expert who has worked on big-budget Disney movies like the 2018 film Christopher Robin. This animation guru will give an online masterclass as part of the course, which will hugely enhance the students’ experience and employability!

We’re excited to help the Popok team make their animation course a reality by covering their costs to rent a bigger training space for 15 months.</p>

Project Goal

To give 25 young future animators in Gyumri the opportunity to participate in a free 15-month in-depth course which will prepare them to enter the animation field and find high-paying jobs in Armenia.

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Ezras Tellalian

Mariya Fandunyan

Jon Campbell

Lyla Boyajian

Narine Atshemyan

Ruzanna Sargsyan

Edward Kargenian

Margarit Piliposyan

Garnik Nanagoulian

Caro Minas

Kristina Khachaturyan

George Bedrosian

Anna Vardanyan

Aline Tashjian

Sarah Stites

Fr. Shnork Souin

David Onanian

James Moresco

Caroline Kernan

Yeprem Kelegian

Aleen Kaltakdjian

Stephen Haroian

Ara Hacet

Jonathan Campbell

Francis Bulbulian

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