Asbarez – California Assemblymember Adrin Nazarian (D-Sherman Oaks) on Monday announced $11 million in state funding for three arts and educational institutions:
- $9 million to establish a TUMO Center for Creative Technologies in the Southeast San Fernando Valley;
- $1 million allocation to the University of Southern California Institute of Armenian Studies;
- $1 million to the Lark Musical Society, a nonprofit that delivers high-quality classical music education, curating performances of music, song, and dance.
“I am very proud to bring California’s backing to the mission of these three organizations, which continually demonstrate their passion and success in educating and investing in our youth. Whether it be the arts, education, or technology, all three organizations have demonstrated a record of helping our students succeed, and they will greatly benefit and enhance the experience of our diverse youth population for decades to come,” said Assemblymember Adrin Nazarian.
The $9 million secured to establish a TUMO Center for Creative Technologies in the Southeast San Fernando Valley of Los Angeles, in partnership with the City of Los Angeles and the USC Institute of Armenian Studies, would make it the first TUMO Center in the United States.
The TUMO Center for Creative Technologies is a free-of-charge educational program that puts teenagers in charge of their own learning. Founded by engineer and entrepreneur Sam and Sylva Simonian, TUMO’s mission is to allow teens to maximize their potential by discovering their passions and building the skills and self-confidence required to shape their future.
The University of Southern California Institute of Armenian Studies, in support of their broad commitment to studying and recording the history of California and Los Angeles through the experiences and memories of California’s large and diverse Armenian community, will also receive a $1 million allocation to support a project to serve both academic and public policy interests. The integrity and value of a large collection of first-person stories for researchers, educators, and policymakers, will be irreplaceable and this funding will allow the Institute to expand the breadth and reach of these programs, benefiting various stakeholders in the state.
“The USC Institute of Armenian Studies Leadership Council expresses its heartfelt gratitude to Assemblymember Nazarian for his unwavering support and the funding for these two critical projects: the $9 million for the United States’ first TUMO Center for Creative Technologies which we will have the great pleasure of helping establish with the City of Los Angeles; and $1 million in funding for our ongoing oral history project which will allow the Institute to expand the breadth and reach of these programs, benefiting various stakeholders in the state,” said Charles Ghailian, Chairman of the Institute’s Leadership Council.
Finally, $1 million in funding will be going to Lark Musical Society, a nonprofit that for over 25 years has served the community in three significant ways: delivering high-quality classical music education; curating performances of music, song, and dance featuring classical and Armenian themes; and creating new classical music compositions. Along with coming capital improvements and expanded programming, thousands of new students will learn and hone their love of music from Lark for years to come.
“We thank the great State of California for its magnanimous support of the Lark Musical Society, a home for music and culture in the community. The support from the State of California has and will help us expand our programming and reach many more students and music lovers. Moreover, Lark’s capital improvement project is more than 50 percent complete and will transform Lark Musical Society into a cultural center with a significant museum collection, expansive library, and new concert hall,” said Vatsche Barsoumian, President of Lark Musical Society.
“We are grateful to California State Assembly Member Adrin Nazarian and his colleagues and remain humbled that they continue to keep Lark in their hearts, endorsing our efforts with action. Now, more than ever, we must invest in the education of our children, helping them become well-rounded citizens and future leaders. This generous funding will propel our growth and make a meaningful impact for years to come,” said Andy and Hayde Torosyan, Co-Chairs of Lark Musical Society Board of Director.