For Students & Young Adults

Explore Professional Possibilities


February 20, 2016 1-6pm


Deadline February 1, 2016

Space is limited to the first 160 registrants on a first come first serve basis.


Sometimes it takes decades of exploring to realize what profession makes you happy or where this or that degree, unexpected conversation, mentorship advice or chance taken on a job opportunity may lead.  Armenian Business Network is bringing together young adults with experienced professionals in various fields to help navigate a wide range of traditional and unexpected career paths.


Discover What's Possible. Ask Questions. Start making exciting professional choices armed with the collective experience of our community, rooting and excited for your success!






ANNA OHANYAN, Keynote. (International Relations & Politics)

Current Position(s): Professor. Chair of the Department of Political Science and International Studies at Stonehill College.


Past Jobs: Work study, research assistant, teaching assistant, assistant professor, associate professor, consultant, author.


What advice would you have given to your 20-year-old self now? Play by the rules, but always question them. Take charge of your identity. Questions without answers are most rewarding so embrace the uncertainty.


Favorite App: The New Yorker app


Connect with Anna: Website

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INESSA RIFKIN, Keynote (Education)

Current Position(s): CEO and Co-Founder of Russian School of Math


Past Jobs: Electrical engineer, software engineer, RSM teacher.


What advice would you have given to your 20-year-old self now? Have one more child in your 20s.


Favorite App: LinkedIn


Connect with Inessa:

PETER KOUTOUJIAN, Keynote (International Relations & Politics)

Current Position(s): High Sheriff of Middlesex County, MA


Past Jobs: Mass Hardware in Waltham; Construction; Tennis instructor; Legislative Aide; Defense attorney; Prosecutor; State Representative.


What advice would you have given to your 20-year-old self now? The harder I work the luckier I get.


Favorite App:, Alexa, TuneIn, Whatsapp​


Connect with Peter:

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JACK ANTOUNIAN (Manufacturing & Supply Chain)

Current Position(s): Vice President of Operations at Revolabs (Yamaha)


Past Jobs: Home repairs, garments store clerk, shipping clerk, bicycle assembler, tow truck operator, gas station attendant, auto repair technician, facilities maintenance, fitness instructor, home repair, landscaper, snow remover, radio repair technician, picture frame assembler, shoe salesman, car salesman, product design engineer, senior manufacturing engineer, operations program manager, software engineer, ERP consultant, consultancy business owner, member of board of directors, manufacturing engineering manager, director technical operations, director of global supply chain, vice president of operations, vice president of manufacturing, executive director of supply chain and quality.


What advice would you have given to your 20-year-old self now? Do not hesitate to reach out to and leverage your industry connections and contacts / available resources, do not try to be a hero and do things alone, especially when you have the means.


Favorite App: Google & Apple Maps


Connect with Jack: LinkedIn

TAMAR HAMPARIAN, RN, BSN, OCN (Medical and Healthcare)

Current Position(s): Clinical Practice Leader of the Cancer Center at Hallmark Health.


Past Jobs: Bone marrow transplant RN at Cedar Sinai Medical Center; home care RN for Cedar Sinai Home Care; infusion nurse at Tower Hematology Oncology Group (California). Staff nurse on oncology floor at St. Elizabeth's. Intake nurse at Boston VNA. Infusion nurse at Winchester Hospital outpatient hem/onc and infusion/charge nurse at Hallmark Health Cancer Center.


What advice would you have given to your 20-year-old self now? Believe in yourself. You are smarter than you think you are.


Favorite App: UpToDate


Connect with Tamar: LinkedIn

RAFFI FESTEKJIAN (Finance & Accounting)

Current Position(s): CEO at Wolters Kluwer Financial Services


Past Jobs:  President at Wolters Kluwer Financial Services; Co-Founder, Principal and CEO at PCI Corporation; Financial Analyst at Kellett Ventures Management. 


What advice would you have given to your 20-year-old self now? Don't assume anything. Do all kind of work to figure out what you don't want to do.


Favorite App: Seat Guru, Uber


Connect with Raffi: LinkedIn

YELENA BISHARYAN (Biotech & Pharmaceutical)

Current Position(s): Director Of External Alliances at Tetragenetics


Past Jobs: Volunteer as a Research Assistant, Research Technician I, Research Technician II, Research Technician III/Lab Manager, Scientist I, Scientist II, Senior Scientist. 


What advice would you have given to your 20-year-old self now? The best way to predict your future is to create it. Never underestimate your ability to do so.


Favorite App: any app that makes my life easier


Connect with Yelena: LinkedIn

MAYIS KIRAKOSYAN, CFA (Finance & Accounting)

Current Position(s): Senior Manager at EY's Transaction Advisory Services.


Past Jobs: Vice President with The BVA Group; Armenia's Department of Finance, Tax Policy Group.


What advice would you have given to your 20-year-old self now?

1. Set ambitious goals. Try and don't be afraid to fail.
2. Develop genuine relationships with people, seek mentors and different perspectives.
3. Stay real and personal. Enjoy the ride!


Favorite App: Paper


Connect with Mayis: LinkedIn

ELEN ZURABYAN (Architecture, Civil Engineering and Real Estate Development)

Current Position(s): Architectural Designer at Payette Associates


Past Jobs: Architectural Intern, Professor Assistant, Waitress, Sales Representative, Project Coordinator, Architectural Designer/ Job Captain, Architectural Consultant.


What advice would you have given to your 20-yo self now? Evaluate the range of career options with an architecture background. Be more proactive in finding ways to alter your college and internship programs to cultivate the range of experience that you are looking for.


Favorite App: Pinterest


Connect with Elen: LinkedIn

CHRIS GARABEDIAN (Biotech and Pharmaceutical)

Current Position(s): Advisor to multiple early-stage biotech companies


Past Jobs: Ice cream scooper; restaurant waiter; UPS package handler; CEO at Sarepta; VP of Corporate Strategy at Celgene; VP of Corporate Development at Gilead; various roles in biopharma (marketing, medical affairs, strategic planning, etc)


What advice would you have given to your 20-yo self now? Trust that the doors that close or never open will lead you to a better opportunity.


Favorite App: Twitter, Starbucks mobile


Connect with Chris: LinkedIn

NIARI KEVERIAN (Sales & Marketing)

Current Position(s): Entrepreneur. Dance teacher.


Past Jobs: Co-Founder and CEO at ZOOS Greek Iced Teas; Brand Manager at Welch’s; Strategist Collective Brands (Sperry Top Sider, Keds, Saucony, Stride Rite Brands); Co-chair 10th anniversary of Babson Entrepreneurship Forum; Exec Committee Member of Sayat Nova Dance Company; Various roles in operations, finance, strategic development at Staples.


What advice would you have given to your 20-yo self now? You can accomplish anything that you put your mind to. The sky is the limit. Reach big, dream big, work hard, play harder and don’t ever give up on your goals.


Favorite App: Instagram


Connect with Niari: LinkedIn

KENNETH MARTIN (Arts & Humanities)

Current Position(s): Photographer, Senior Lecturer


Past Jobs: Toy store, grocery store clerk, Camp Haiastan counselor, Armenian Weekly photographer, staff Photographer, freelance and agency photographer, senior lecturer in photography and photojournalism


What advice would you have given to your 20-year-old self now? Choose a career, stick with it and plan ahead!


Favorite App: Light Meter


Connect with Kenneth:

GAREGIN PAPOIAN (Engineering and Sciences)

Current Position(s): Professor (Theoretical and Computational Chemistry and Biophysics)


Past Jobs: Student, Graduate Student, Postdoctoral Researcher, Assistant Professor, Associate Professor, Professor.


What advice would you have given to your 20-year-old self now? I would not have changed what I was doing at 20. Later, around 30, I would have advised to live more in the moment, and not worry to much about the future.


Favorite App: Changes every few months. Currently, Evernote.


Connect with Garegin:


Current Position(s): Senior Director New Markets, Executive Education at Harvard Business School


Past Jobs: Summer Volunteer at Mass Eye and Ear Infirmary, General Clinic during high school ( confirmed medicine was not my future path). Most Fun Job – selling home computers on commission at Sears. Most Challenging Adult Assignment – bring Harvard Business School Executive Education to China in 2000.


What advice would you have given to your 20-year-old self now? Take more risks, be more bold, take on the assignments even if you do not have all the skills, just having 1/3 of the core skills in a job description are enough to step in to a new role.


Favorite App: FitBit


Connect with Ani:



Paul Kassabian (Architecture, Civil Engineering and Real Estate Development)

Current Position(s): Structural Engineer at SIMPSON GUMPERTZ & HEGER.


Past Jobs: Art auction house intern; factory worker; retail cashier; steel fabricator; structural engineer, lecturer at MIT and Harvard-GSD; Associate Principal.


What advice would you have given to your 20-year-old self now? Stop learning how it should be and start thinking how it could be.


Favorite App: Paper, Google Maps, Vimeo, Structures: a visual exploration. 


Connect with Paul:



ARMEN BAIBOURTIAN (International Relations and Politics)

Current Position(s): Professor of Practice of Political Science at UMass Amherst. Director of Administration at the Diocese of the Armenian Church of America (Eastern).



Past Jobs: For almost six years, worked for the United Nations in capacity of Senior Adviser to the UN Resident Coordinator in Armenia (2008-2013). Developed and coordinated UNDP “Global Armenia” program aimed at facilitating the Armenian Diaspora’s engagement in the country’s development projects. Concurrently, taught at the EU founded Center for European Studies at Yerevan State University. Served twice as Deputy Foreign Minister of Armenia (1997-2000 and 2004-2008) and was the Chief Negotiator with the European Union (2005-2006). Co-chaired the Security Dialogue with the United States (1998-1999). Served as the first Armenian Ambassador to India, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Indonesia (2000-2004) as well as the first Consul General in Los Angeles (1995-1997). In 1993-1995, held the position of the Deputy Permanent Representative of Armenia to the United Nations in New York. Served as the Foreign Policy Advisor to the Speaker of the newly independent Armenia’s Parliament (1991-1992).


What advice would you have given to your 20-year-old self now? a) be persistent and pursue your goals and plans until they are accomplished. b) learn to plan smartly c) absorb as much knowledge as possible.


Favorite App: Yelp, Skype, Ted


Connect with Armen:

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TSOLEEN SARIAN (International Relations & Politics)

Current Position(s): Associate Director of Project SAVE Armenian Photograph Archives. The Koutoujian Committee


PAST JOBS: Campaign for Peter Koutoujian - fundraising and field operations. State Representative, Sheriff and Congressional campaigns; Kaswell Flooring Systems; Global Partnership for Afghanistan; Armenia Tree Project; Brookstone (for the cool gadgets); Intern at Conflict Management Group; Intern at Armenian Embassy.


What advice would you have given to your 20-yo self now? Don't worry so much, it doesn't change anything. Be brave and have moments of fearlessness, they remain with you forever.


Favorite App: Twitter during debates and the bachelor/bachelorette, and award shows.


Connect with Tsoleen:

ROBERT KALANTARI (Engineering and Sciences)

Current Position(s): President and CEO of EPM. An Engineering and consulting company serving nuclear power industry.


Past Jobs: Pumping Gas, Mechanic, Tow Truck Driver, Engineer, Senior Engineer, Division Manager, Director of Engineering, Chief Operating Officer (COO).


What advice would you have given to your 20-year-old self now? Work hard and Stay focused.


Favorite App: Google Maps


Connect with Robert: LinkedIn