WATERTOWN, Mass.—A gathering of approximately 60 business people and technical developers gathered at the Armenian Museum of America (AMA) in October to learn about services offered by the Gyumri Information Technology Center (GITC) in Gyumri, Armenia. Amalya Yeghoyan, GITC’s executive director, outlined both GITC’s training program and the software and computer services offered to clients worldwide.
GITC offers a two-year program of hands-on IT training to qualified applicants with an existing background in computer science, electronics, mathematics, or related fields. Students select a focus either on mobile applications or web development. GITC’s environment replicates a work environment with daily seven-hour attendance and strict adherence to professional behavior and dress codes. The second year includes a co-op program where students work in industry to gain real-world practical experience. More than 90 percent of GITC graduates find work in Armenia in their field of study, and no graduates have left Armenia. Students pay $500 tuition per year, which is only a fraction of GITC’s real cost per student.
To support their efforts, GITC offers consulting and software development services to clients, focusing on web development, mobile applications using the IOS and Android operating systems, software development, networking, and other services. Currently GITC is serving clients in Armenia, Russia, Germany, and the U.S. Communication with GITC may be in English, Russian, or Armenian via e-mail, Skype, or telephone. Yeghoyan indicated that the per-engineer costs in Armenia are significantly lower than alternative offshore development centers, and that GITC is committed to high-quality standards and satisfied clients.
Yeghoyan’s brief PowerPoint presentation was followed by an eight-minute video showing GITC’s facilities with testimonies by students. A question and answer session followed. The presentation was in English.
GITC was established in 2005 by the Fund for Armenian Relief (FAR), the Enterprise Incubator Foundation, Shirak Technologies Ltd., and donors from Armenia and the Armenian Diaspora to provide an IT infrastructure in Gyumri and attract businesses. It has now embarked on an effort to establish a revenue stream to sustain its education programs.
Additionally GITC, in partnership with the Armenian Educational Foundation, has reached out to schools in Artsakh (Karabagh) and Armenia’s border regions with educational programs.
Yeghoyan’s visit to the U.S. was sponsored by FAR. Her presentation in Watertown was sponsored by AMA, the Armenian Business Network (ABN), and the National Association for Armenian Studies and Research (NAASR). AMA’s director, Berj Chekijian, ABN’s founder, Jack Antounian, and Yeghoyan’s host, Joseph Dagdigian, offered brief introductory remarks. AMA, Eastern Lahmajun, and Massis Bakery supplied some of the refreshments.
For more information on GITC, visit http://gitc.am/gitc.