December 8, 2018
EDUCATION IN GERMANY: Interview with Armenian Ambassador to Germany Ashot Smbatyan

by Ami Chichakyan

Armenian Ambassador to Germany: Armenian students in Germany very active and successful.



– Mr. Ambassador, how would you evaluate German-Armenian relations from educational standpoint?

Armenian-German relations are dynamically advancing in all sectors – political, economic, interparliamentary, cultural. This dynamically advancing agenda also includes the educational sector.

I have to mention that this sector is on high level: Germany is in the third place among the states Armenia collaborates with on education, following the USA and Russia.

The education field was an especially important part of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s visit to Armenia in August. During her visit several agreements were concluded, which will further support Armenian-German educational collaboration. On October 17-19, 2018 Acting Education and Science Minister Arayik Harutyunyan led a delegation to Germany, where productive meetings were held. During the meetings, Germany emphasized its support for changes in the Armenian educational system, cooperation among natural science institutes, training of Armenian experts in Germany, Armenian experts to be included in German institutes’ initiatives, research in Germany’s rich history in the education sector, and other mutual projects.

– What is the importance of participation of Armenian students in such projects?

– The German education system is the most advanced in the world, especially in such sectors as medicine, information technology, law, and economics. It is one of the most developed systems in terms of quality. I must also note quality and price balance in Germany. We all know how expensive it is to study in Europe or the US. Germany, however, is very cheap, especially taking into consideration the quality of education its students receive. Therefore, I attach great importance to the fact that Armenian students are educated in Germany so that they can obtain lots of knowledge for the future of Armenia.

It is worth mentioning that the Armenian side also needs to make an effort to attract German students to get engaged in projects taking place in Armenia. That is why studying international systems is important for Armenia.

– Are German educational and scholarship projects active in Armenia?

As I already mentioned, Germany is one of Armenia’s most important partners in the field of education, and one of the leading countries in terms of the number of scholarships provided to our country.

The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) provides scholarships to Armenian students and experts to study in Germany. The scholarships are for training sessions, professional projects, research projects, doctorate studies, as well as summer classes to learn the German language.

Since 1990, 2,200 Armenians received scholarships from DAAD. The information center in Yerevan provides free consultations on any issue related to education in Germany.

Approximately 200 Armenian students have received scholarships to study in Germany through other German organizations. Therefore, we can say that the scholarships and plans provided to Armenia by Germany are very active and advance yearly.

– Could you mention some achievements Armenian students made in Germany?

I can proudly say that Armenian students are very active and successful in the field of natural sciences. I can say the same for the fields of humanities, art, music and culture. We have lots of successful musicians – violinists, cellists, saxophonists, as well as painters and art experts.

I can also proudly state that my meetings with the leadership of German foundations and institutes are always positive, and I always hear a lot of praise for our Armenian students.

ami.chAmi Chichakyan is a journalist based in Yerevan, Armenia. A graduate of Yerevan State Linguistic University, she started her career in Aravot Daily as a journalist in 2013. Currently, she is the editor of the English version of Aravot Daily. She has cooperated with the international media, such as Euronews, Voice of America.