Melkonian Alumni and Friends

Official Website





dedicated to the legacy of


Sunday, January 17, 2016

Memorial Service of MELKONIAN BROTHERS
2215 East Colorado Boulevard, Pasadena, CA
Holy Mass (Badarak) at 10:30 a.m.

Luncheon will be served with a cultural program presentation at the GERAGOS HALL
TOGETHER, let us honor the legacy of our beloved MELKONIAN BROTHERS
For RSVP please call Kevork Hagopian (818) 765-0286 or e-mail

Melkonian Brothers Celebration Invite 2016 Melkonian Brothers Celebration Invite 2016
Melkonian Reunion Dance Gagik Mkhitaryan.jpg

Tuesday, December 15 at 7 PM - 10 PM

AGBU Western District
2495 E Mountain St,
Pasadena, California 91104

Dear Melkoniantsiner and Friends,
Please join us for a reunion with our beloved dance teacher from Melkonian - Baron Gagik Mkhitaryan.
We will have Armenian music, so bring your dance shoes and prepare for a fun night! Let's remember the steps we learned back in the days at Melkonian....
Apologies for the last minute invite. Hope you can all make it!

Melkonian Picnic 2015

Melkonian News




Sebouh Abcarian (Apkarian) (1933 - 2014)

Cyprus-born composer, conductor, painter and educator for more than 50 years. He has also founded the Armenian radio program at the Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation, where he presented various programs for 46 years. After graduating from the Melkonian Educational Institute, Nicosia, Cyprus, he continued his studies in Paris. As an opera singer, he has given recitals in Nicosia, Athens, Beirut, Aleppo, Cairo and Paris. He has also composed many songs, choral works, chamber music, oratories, cantatas, symphonic suites, and musical caricatures.

Many of these compositions were played in Tokyo, Paris, Cyprus, Beirut and the USA and won prizes. He conducted KOHAR in worldwide concert tours since 1999, namely in Beirut, Lebanon; Nicosia, Cyprus; Istanbul, Turkey; Moscow, Russia; North America Tour, USA and Canada; Damascus and Aleppo, Syria; and South America Tour; Uruguay, Argentine and Brazil.

He is the founder and artistic conductor of KOHAR Symphony Orchestra & Choir in the disastrous earthquake zone of Gyumri, Armenia

Melkonian Ed. Institute For Syrian-Armenian Students

view larger

view larger

January 19, 2014 Berj Setrakian, Esq., President Honorable Members,
A.G.B.U. Central Board
New York

Dear Mr. Setrakian:

Dear Mr. Setrakian: With this Appeal - Open Letter we appeal to you to reopen The Melkonian Educational Institute, especially for Armenian students from Syria.

As you are aware, a terrible civil war has been taking place in Syria for the last 3 years. Factions from all sides are shooting and bombing each other without distinction. Armenians living in Aleppo, Damascus, Kamishly, Kessab, and other regions of Syria are falling victims to this terrible situation. Surly, you are privy to more detailed accounts of the devastation and slayings that Armenians in Syria, namely Armenian youth, are suffering. Armenian schools remain partially open, but are in constant danger of attacks. Thousands of Syrian-Armenians have been forced to leave their homes and seek residence in Armenia and Artsakh, Jordan, Lebanon, or elsewhere.

Today, the Armenian youth who attend schools in Syria live in constant fear and anxiety of getting killed. They are also exposed to the other psychological and emotional traumas of living through war. There is no safety, and living conditions are unbearable. In parts of Aleppo, food and water are scarce. It is crucial, that we act now to lend a helping hand and move these youth to safety.

In light of the horrific and volatile state of Syrian affairs, we urge The Honorable Central Board to retract its decision to close the Melkonian Institute, particularly since this motion would free Armenian students from their daily struggles in Syria. We believe that financial considerations run secondary to the need to execute this philanthropic initiative. For the past eight years after the closure of the Melkonian Institute, the accumulated funds to the Benefactors' huge Bequest have significantly multiplied due to income generated by commercial structures built on Melkonian property. Also, because these students are technically refugees, various international organizations, the United Nations, American Red Cross, and others would be willing to assist. We are sure that your legal and public relations advisors could find the financial means necessary to reopen the Melkonian Institute.

The reestablishment of the Melkonian Institute would provide a safe haven in which approximately 1000 students would receive a high-quality education right away. In addition, it will build upon Melkonian's mission as a major center for educating Armenian youth and preventing the loss of the western Armenian dialect. This should be at the forefront of A.G.B.U's objectives. No other Armenian organization, not even the Armenian Church, can accomplish this mission.

Considering the severity and seriousness of the above-mentioned set of circumstances, we formally propose that you withdraw your decision to close The Melkonian Educational Institute, and reopen it without delay. While A.G.B.U's ongoing efforts to help Syrian Armenians are widely appreciated, we believe the venture to reopen The Melkonian Institute will offer invaluable benefits to this community of Armenians and inevitably build upon the merits of the A.G.B.U's organization.

We also propose that the humanitarian aid being provided by A.G.B.U. to Armenia be primarily allocated to the cause of Armenian refugees from Syria, who are settling in Armenia and Artsakh.

We trust that your consideration of this plight will be fueled by benevolence and logicality.

Thanking you in advance,

A group of Melkonian Graduates

Note: All those Armenians who are in agreement to reopen the Melkonian Educational Institute mainly for the Syrian-Armenian students, please complete and sign the provided e-mail form and send it to the assigned e-mail address.

Visit Melkonian Forever Main Page and send your support by e-mail or via Feedback.

Thank You

Melkonian Institute and Dirty Tricks by AGBU

The TIMELESS and HONORED Melkonian Educational Institute in the NEWS
Complements of AGBU Central Board of Directors

Clarifying announcement by concerned former Melkonian students

Thank you AGBU for making Melkonian a SILENT WHISPER

As most of you are aware, Melkonian Alumni & Friends last year honored their long time beloved teacher Mr. Kevork Hagopian in October, during their annual dinner banquet, October, last year. Subsequently, they approached Archbishop Derderian to start the process of bestowment of Holy Etchmiadzin Encyclical, and SOURP SAHAG�SOURP MESROB medal to Mr. K. Hagopian. They also approached AGBU, to see if it might be possible to jointly organize the evening of the bestowment of the medal since Mr. K. Hagopian has served in other AGBU schools as well.

AGBU�s response was very positive and even requested to take the lead in organizing such an event together. After all the required process was accomplished by Melkonian Alumni & Friends and the date of the event was tentatively set, it became apparent that the whole process was being hijacked by the a newly organized group of five individuals named AGBU Melkonian Alumni Association their name is being mentioned as cosponsors of the event instead of Melkonian Alumni and Friends. Mr. Hagopian repeatedly refused to participate in the event but it was eventually forced on him as the only alternative in receiving the medal. The presentation is scheduled for March 16.

This simple announcement is made to inform all those who are interested as to the facts of the event that is being organized and the disingenuous tactics employed by the five individuals comprising the newly formed AGBU Melkonian Alumni Association. These individuals were all in favor of AGBU closing the school, selling the property and using the proceeds at AGBU�s discretion. What is the purpose and the long range objective of organizing such an Alumni entity at this time should be the question that everyone must ask themselves.

Concerned former Melkonian students

Annual Melkonian Alumni Dinner Banquet 

October 20th, 2012 - California, USA

Mr. Kevork Hagopian honored at Melkonian ALumni and Friends Gala Celebration on October 20, 2012  in Los Angeles, for



This video presentation was prepared by The Melkonian Alumni and Friends.

Here is a list of of our prior appreciation plaque recipients.

Mr. Mahdessian, Armenian MP in the Cyprus Parliament

Our heartfelt congratulations to Mr. Vartkes Mahdesian for his re-election as the representative of the Armenian Community in Cyprus Parliament.

You can follow Mr. Mahdessian on facebook.

"Hokehankisd" and "Hokedjash" January 13, 2013
A memorial service (Hokehankisd) will be held for national benefactors, Krikor and Garabed Melkonian at St. Gregory Armenian Apostolic Church 2215 East Colorado Blvd. Pasadena California, U.S.A. at 10:30am January 13th, 2013. Hokedjash and gathering at the Galoustian Dunaian Hall.
Melkonian Alumni and Friendds Newsletter
Soon you will receive our newsletter in the mail. We are in the final stages of preparation and after after some final edits we will send it for printing. The new publication has pictures, commentary, articles and reunion news. 
Melkonain Alumni and Friends Newsletter sub-committee 
Schedule of Activities for the year 2012/2013


Petition Results sent to the President of Cyprus

Worldwide Petition Results sent to the President of Cyprus and other Government
(Updated Aug/2009)

Yeghya Kayayan's MEI Memoroal book published
An event by Gbrahayer in Cyprus celebrating the publication of the "Melkonian Educational Institute Memorial" book, by Yeghya Kayayan, Thursday June 24, 2010 at 7:00 pm Utudjian Hall, Nicosia Cyprus.

Download a 58 Page Sample
From the Archives


Document showing the inauguration program and the speech given by Mr. Seropian during the Laying of the foundation of MEI on February 15th, 1924 ...

The income from the Melkonian Alumni Endowment Fund for scholarships is available to all Melkonian Graduates and their children for higher education. Application have be sent to the AGBU scholarship committee

Cyprus Armenians on Yerkir Media TV Channel
Class 68 celebrates 85th anniversary in Yerevan

2010 year of the reunions

1975 re-union in Cyprus Organized by Harout Knadjian

    A very successful reunion organized by the 1975 graduates and included all their favorite teachers. We thank Harout Knadjian of Califronia and Ani Der-Nishanian of Cyprus for this one week event. (pictures) (video)
   � Organized by Anita Boyadjian-Chilingirian in Montral Canada the 1972(74 Masnakidagan) class held its re-union in the month of July 2010. (1ST PICTURE)
   � The 1990 class had a reunion in July 2010 in Glendale CA USA. (2ND PICTURE)
   � The 1976 mini-reunion in Athens and Cyprus Julu 2010 (3-4TH PICTURES)

   � Melkoniantsis are trying to have a major reunion in Yerevan, Armenia. Plans include celebrations for the Melkonian Institute 80th anniversary.
    1986 Melkonian Alumni planning for a reunion in Nicosia, Cyprus 2011. They have a group on facebook to sign up.
    UK Melkonian Alumni is preparing a reunion dinner in London  at the end of September or early October. Dates and location to be announced.
    World wide alumni re-union in Cyprus to be announced soon.
    The word is that the 1977 Class is also thinking of a re-union for next year.
    If your class is planning or had a re-union already, email us at and send us pictures so we can announce it and post the information here.
Read our blog
We moved our 'RESPONSES'  to the blog section. We welcome all comments and responses.

To the AGBU Central Board of Directors:

I am writing to you as a Melkonian graduate as well as a child of Izmir Armenians.

My father Mourat Basmadjian was an AGBU member all his life.  He was an AGBU representative of the Armenian Community in Iraklion- Crete Greece a small community of a couple hundred Armenians.  He trusted the AGBU because of its leadership-- Egyptian Armenians with Izmir roots.

I am sure that Garabed Melkonian trusted AGBU for the same reasons. Izmir Armenians always took care of their poor and disenfranchised orphans.  I want to remind you that the poor and the orphans will always be with us if we choose to see them.  I am sure that the Melkonian Brothers interests were focused on the poor and orphans and it was in serving them that they gave their all.  It is by serving the Armenian poor and orphans that we can serve the Armenian nation and not by serving AGBU's interests (the particular interests of the few). All Melkonian past and present students are vocal because that is our duty to the Melkonian Brothers: Garabed and Krikor and their legacy. So listen to us and listen carefully.  DO NOT DESTROY THE MEMORY OF THE MELKONIAN BROTHERS.  If you are incapable of administering to the needs of the Melkonian Educational Institute let others do it.

I am so glad that His Beatitude Archbishop Mesrob Mutafyan Armenian Patriarch of Istanbul and all Turkey has taken the responsibility of his position seriously and courageously in filing a Lawsuit against AGBU.  I would also like to remind you that in the Greek Orthodox Church the Jurisdiction of both Cyprus (and incidentally, Crete) is under the Greek Patriarch of Constantinople (Istanbul) and that the situation historically was the same in the Armenian Church. I will give you an example.  When the Armenian Archbishop of Athens Greece tried to sell the Armenian cemetery in Iraklion, Crete, Greece, The Archbishop was not able to complete the sale because the Armenian Patriarch of Constantinople had Jurisdiction over Crete. Patriarch Shnorhk came to our rescue and saved our community's cemetery.

It is disingenuous of the AGBU to try to diminish the contractual and historical rights and privileges of the Armenian Patriarch of Constantinople (Istanbul).

Eliza Basmadjian O'Doherty

Western Armenian Language in danger.
A movement started by Vartan Ozinian and Koharig Kevorkian(Melkoniantsi) is heading a group of Armenian and French intellectuals, to fight for minority rights in France. The organization is working under PROEDUCATION and GAMMAINSTITUTE with plans to collect signatures and apply to European Union courts to reopen the Melkonian school for the preservation of Western Armenian Language, which has  been accepted by the European Union as 54th Minority language with funding for its preservation. You can obtain more information by e-mailing to Vartan Ozinian,



Memorial Service (karasounk) for Onik Tzevahirian- Class of '82
Services and a 'HOKEDJASH' were held in Glendale, CA USA for Onik Tzevahirian's "Karasounk" with Onik's classmates and friends. Services were also held in Athens at the Armenian Apostolik Orthodox Church Sourp Asdvadzadin. We send our deepest sympathies and condolences to Onik's family.

2010 Year of the Reunions...
It turned out to be a mega reunion summer with gatherings in Canada, Cyprus, Greece and Califronia. Pictures of our classmates and friends are being posted all over facebook. With this renewed enthusiasm new reunions are being planned as we speak for next year and the year after. In addition there could be a major reunion for all Melkoniantsi's in the near future. Pictures...

Krikor Avedissian's "Melkonian in Pictures" project.
We are adding more photographs of the school taken by Krikor Avedissian. Also I have visited the school lately and have taken pictures which I am preparing for the website and will publish them soon.

Interest in re-opening MEI is growing...

Organizations, individuals and officials from Armenia, Switzerland, Moscow, United States, Lebanon and other countries are extensively researching and planning for the future of Melkonain Institute. More information coming soon. 

We have found this list on the internet for melkoniantis-s from all over the world. Check it out. Melkonian Alumni Listing 

Email comments to:
Melkonian Alumni and Friends

Հայերը Կիպրոսում. Եռանդուն, Հայախօս Գաղութ՝ Միջերկրականում
  - posted by
Պատմաբան Աւետիս Փոշօղլեանի հետ նոյն օդանաւով Լառնաքայից վերադառնում եմ Պէյրութ: Արդէն մի քանի տարի Աւետիսը ընտանիքի հոգսերը ապահովելու համար ստիպուած է Կիպրոսի մայրաքաղաքում բանուոր աշխատել, մածուն արտադրող մի գործարանում, քանի որ �Մելքոնեան� վարժարանը փակուելուց յետոյ, նա զրկուել է հայ երեխաներին հայոց պատմութիւն դասաւանդելու հնարաւորութիւնից:

Armenians in Cyprus
AYB Conference with World MEI Alumni and Friends
Yerevan, Armenia (March 2010)
AYB Foundation representatives met with World MEI Alumni and Friends to discuss possible plans to convince the central board of the AGBU organization and stop the sale and re-open the historic Melkonian Educational Insitute in Nicosia, Cyprus.

Newspaper coverage of Conference and findings...
    Melkonian issue reaches Armenia. March 2010. 
    We have to preserve 'Western Armenian Language". March 2010.
    Armenian Diaspora school. March 2010.
    Opening Melkonian. March 2010.
    New School on Melkonian Grounds. March 2010.

�Ayb� Foundation plans their second school on the MEI Site

Yerevan, Armenia (Feb, 2010)

Ayb Educational Foundation activities and plans of construction of "gertakgan Avan" in Yerevan. During their discussion and meetings with the media in Yerevan, Armenia, the organization has proposed to build their second school in Cyprus, on the grounds of theMelkonian Institute. Rev. Mesrob Aramyan is leading the movement.

�Ayb� Foundation Drafts Plan to Reopen Melkonian
Urges AGBU Not to Sell

Yerevan, Armenia (Dec. 2009)
At a discussion group organized yesterday by the �Ayb� Educational Foundation, Father Mesrop Aramian, Chairman of the Board of Trustees, declared that the organization had drafted a business plan to reopen the Melkonian Education Institute in Nicosia Cyprus. Established in 1926 by the Melkonian Brothers, it was the only remaining boarding school servicing students from the Armenian diaspora until the AGBU decided to cut funding in 2005. ...more...


We have an eye opening, fact filled selection of articles in our Archive Section. (Updated 8/7) ...more...

CNA - Strasbourg-France 24/9/2009
CoE calls on Cyprus to promote Armenian and Cypriot Maronite Arabic language By Nicos Rousis
Strasbourg, Sep 24 (CNA) � The Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe calls on Cyprus to adopt a structured policy to protect and promote the Armenian and Cypriot Maronite Arabic languages on the island. ...more...

European Charter (1/2005)
For Regional Or Minority Languages
Presented to the Secretary General of the Council of Europe in accordance with Article 15 of the Charter, Cyprus.
"Cypriot Armenians attending the Melkonian Institute tuition is ... paid by the Government directly to the School."  ...more...

The truth from the Chairman of MEI
Sent to us by the principal of the MEI, in which the Chairman of the Melkonian Educational Institute Board, Mr. SARKIS BUCHAKJIAN explains why the school should not be closed and/or relocated. Submitted just two years before the AGBU's decision to close the school.
The report concludes with the following plea.
"Some views suggest the relocation of MEI to Armenia, Lebanon or Bulgaria. These people are unaware of the unique advantages of MEI being in Cyprus."

"Apart from having established international academic standards, the comprehensive Armenian program consolidates the Armenian identity of our students who learn Armenian language, literature, history and art."
"MEI is a feather in AGBU�s hat and can become the jewel on its crown. Give MEI the chance it deserves. Give the Armenian children the chance to have a VIP passport through their education at MEI."

Mr. Demetris Christofias, the President of The Republic of Cyprus during his visit to The Republic of Armenia
AZG Daily newspaper
(July 08, 2009)

Mr. Christofias response about the situation of the Melkonian Educational Institute:
�We are in favor of seeing the Melkonian continue its existence, this is our policy. This is our feeling as well.�
�This is a complicated issue and complicated problem. We say that we are ready to solve the complex Cyprus problem through peaceful means and I hope that we can find the way to solve this issue as well through dialogue, for the benefit of Armenians of Cyprus, Lebanon, Armenia and the whole world.� ...

Public Statement (June 10, 2009)
Vartan Ozinian - Spokesman for Pro Edvcatio

We the, Pro Edvcatio international worldwide movement, join the voice of 200 (two hundred) persons for the proposal of the MEI�s reopening on its actual real estate as a secondary boarding school where the Western Armenian will be the compulsory main language of studies open to the worldwide learning horizons.
We consider the M E I's defence a duty for everybody being pro Human Rights. ...more... 


... the Cyprus government's educational report in 2004 states that the Melkonian is one of the most prominent schools on the island.  Also, European institutions regarded Melkonian as a unique educational center for multilingualism.  These are important points because they attract European funding.  And "YES" Cyprus is the best location for the school not only geographically, but also politically because no other government can be as supportive (with its legislation) as Cyprus. In addition, the Cyprus government promised 150,000 CY Pounds to the school on the occasion of the 75th anniversary through the building of computer and language labs.  Of course all plans were aborted because of the Central Board's decision.
Reopening Melkonian is extremely difficult, but not impossible.

A sincere message from Alex Manoogian (1996) "No need to close Melkonian" emphasizes Patriarch (2005)
Sent by AGBU's President Alex Manoogian and the Central Board of Directors, to the Melkonian Educational Institute's 70th anniversary celebration committee. In his letter, in the year 1996, the President of the General Benevolent Union, Mr. Manoogian (AGBU Chairman for Life) wrote...

"...Melkonian belongs to all of us, especially to the generations that received their education there, and with their collective determination it (the Melkonian School) should continue its traditional mission..."
"The closing of any educational institution is considered a national catastrophe for
us, ...our wish is to keep the Melkonian School open forever..."

"No need to close Melkonian" emphasizes Patriarch (2005)
ISTANBUL, March 13 (LRAPER Church Bulletin). His Beatitude Mesrob II, Armenian Patriarch of Istanbul with Noyan Tapan information agency.
Q. - How do you assess the AGBU announcement of their wish to establish a similar institution in Armenia, instead of keeping the Melkonian Educational Institute open?
A. - What does "similar" institution mean? How can the only Armenian senior high school operating in the European Union be replaced with a new school in Armenia? Opening a new school in Armenia will cost, with the most exaggerated estimate, 2-3 million US dollars.... Our people have a right to know... Today we can all say to the AGBU "Give an account of thy stewardship." ...more..

Congratulations: Mr. Vartkes Kourouyan Congratulations: Mr. Gerald Papasian
Recipient of Sts. Sahag and Mesrob Medal Recipient of the "Movses Khorenatsi" Medal

Mr. Kourouyan, principal of TCA Arshag Dickranian School in Hollywood, joined the rank of esteemed recipients of the Sts. Sahag and Mesrob Medal - granted by His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians.
Mr. Kourouyan is a  Melkonian Graduate and has served as a teacher at the Melkonian Institute before coming to the US.

Our congratulations to a very famous Melkoniantsi Mr. Gerald Papasian, actor, director, producer, writer and director of Tigran Chouhajian Research Center in Paris, recipient of the "Movses Khorenatsi" Medal of Honor in Yerevan, Armenia. Click Jirair Papazian Article to read the article in the Nor Or newspaper page 8, dated June 18 2009, written in Armenian

Melkonian Preservation Order/Greek-Cyprus News Updated Nov. 02/2007
Melkonian Education Institute/ENGLISH
Updated Nov. 05/2009
Melkonian Education Institute/ARMENIAN
Updated Nov. 05/2009
Kevork Yazedjian: AGBU Politics/Melkonian
Update Oct. 01/2009