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From dream to reality: The promising future of Armenian wine industry

I am Elvina Asatryan, a senior student at Agribusiness Teaching Center (ATC) in Yerevan.

ATC is a collaborative program between Armenian National Agrarian University (ANAU) and Texas A&M University. All the courses at ATC are taught in English and we are given first-hand agribusiness experience through internship programs.  

Not only did ATC imbue me with up-to-date knowledge of agribusiness, public speaking and networking skills, but it fundamentally changed my way of thinking. I feel like far more confident, capable person, who is ready to pursue her dreams.

First businesswoman in the wine sector

From childhood, agriculture played a huge role in my life and I always knew it was a field I wanted to go into. I am from the province of Vayots Dzor, which is very well known for its wine. My father was involved in winemaking and after my grandfather told me there was no woman in the wine business, I resolved to become the first businesswoman in the wine sector.

From that moment on, all my efforts have been directed to finding exchange program that will help me to achieve my goal. Most the people at my age dream to have a good career, become a successful businessman, businesswomen, etc. I do not dream. You know why? Since dreams are goals for me and I am sure that I will achieve them.  

The guarantee of my confidence and the key to my success are and are going to be the opportunities provided by ICARE. I define ICARE as a huge intellectual network, which stimulates students’ development. Thanks to knowledge and communication skills gained at ICARE, I became Fullbright Program winner in 2017.

The Fulbright Program is the flagship international educational exchange program sponsored by the U.S. government which gives an opportunity to talented students to continue their study in the USA.  The project proposal that I developed for the application to this program was an establishment of an Armenian Wine Association. Based on my background, communications skills, and professor's advice, I was able to convince the selection committee that I am a person who has a clear image for the future and can positively contribute to the success of the wine sector in Armenia.

My mission is to make Armenian wine well known across the globe. Armenian wine does not enjoy the same widespread acclaim as wines from Western Europe. I believe I have found a remedy for this problem and have intended to unite all Armenian wine companies through the creation of an Armenian wine association.

Creating your own way in!

I always say “if an opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door” I introduce my success story very brightly, but, of course, there were a lot of difficulties and failures that I have faced. My advice is that we do not need to be afraid of failing. Failure is an opportunity to begin again, only this time more wisely. I perceive life as a game with a set of rules, we just need to understand the rules and play our specific game in which we are engaged. We should play the game and play it to win.

Picture credit: Elvina Asatryan