Beyond the Classroom: How Professor Kayzakian Transforms Learning

Ever so often, there are people that come into one’s life that have a great impact. For many at GCC, that memorable face is the ever-smiling Professor Arthur Kayzakian, the guy who made English 101 a lot more than just a mandatory class. 

Arthur Kayzakian is no pushover in the amount of work given. He’s a heavyweight in the English literature and composition arena, but he’s got a style of teaching that makes you sit up and take notice. 

His secret? He’s all about letting curiosity run wild and encouraging students to think outside the box. He’s got this thing where he doesn’t just tell you how to get the work done. Instead, he takes you by the hand and walks you through it. From the mess that is brainstorming to the beautiful, polished piece of writing at the end, Kayzakian’s right there with you. It’s less about ticking boxes and more about discovering how incredible the world of English can be. 

And the workload? Yes, Kayzakian has high standards, no doubt about that. But he’s not the type to leave you hanging. If a student may need extra time or is simply struggling and is stuck on an assignment, he’s there to help. He likes to say, “Learning is not a sprint but a marathon. You don’t have to know everything at once.”

But here’s where Kayzakian really stands out: his heart. This professor remembers every student’s birthday, knows the names of their pets as that was asked from the beginning of the semester, and genuinely cares about their lives outside of class. He’s even been known to put on extra sessions just to discuss things his students are interested in. He once pushed back a major essay deadline because he could tell students were all stressed to the max as it was a winter course. But he didn’t stop there. He sat the students down and talked about handling stress and the importance of mental health. “Professor Arthur Kayzakian spent as much time as I needed with one on one work to get me to the best shape in writing that I could be in to get through the class smoothly,” said Arthur Mazmanyan, who took Kayzakian’s winter course.

Over the years, Kayzakian earned his fair share of achievements, but he’ll tell you the real prize is the letters he gets from past students. They write about how his love for English sparked their own and how his belief in them pushed them to achieve more than they ever thought possible. In a world where your worth is often judged down to your GPA, Professor Kayzakian is a breath of fresh air. “I remember I was struggling with the pace of the class as it was during a winter semester and he gave me a couple extra days to catch up as I had also joined the class late,” said a past student, Renee Andonian, about her experience. Kayzakian is a a reminder that it’s possible to expect great things from students without forgetting that they’re human. He’s proof that kindness and difficult academics can go hand in hand. 

“Education is not just about stuffing facts into heads. It’s about poking at curiosity, and teaching students to question and learn,” Kayzakian said. “And that, to me, is what teaching English 101 is all about.”

Ashot Muradyan can be reached at [email protected]