Dr. Ara and Alice Apkarian of Orange County, California, established a $100,000 endowment fund to support graduate students research awards in the Armenian Studies Program at University of California at Irvine. Three years ago, the Apkarians had made another $100,000 donation to help establish the Meghrouni Family Presidential Chair in Armenian Studies at UCI.
Ara is a distinguished professor of chemistry at UCI where he started teaching in 1983, and was the chairman of the Department. He is the director of the Center of Chemistry at the Speace-Time Limit, Ara is a member of the Armenian Studies Advisory Committee at UCI. A graduate of Northwestern University, where Ara met his wife, they both went to Cornell University for post-doctoral training. Alice is a retired chemistry professor at Saddleback College.
Ara came from Beirut, Lebanon in 1973, when he was 17 years old and went on to study at USC.
The new award is named after their daughter Naneh, who received her doctorate in math education and now is engaged in post doctoral research at Western Michigan University. The Naneh Award will provide partial support of a graduate student who is starting in the Fall of 2018.