GCC Closes Campus in Honor of Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day

The 108 year long struggle for recognition continues

On April 24, Glendale Community College’s campus was closed, in honor of Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day. April 24, 1915 is the date commonly believed to be the beginning of the Armenian genocide, and is subsequently the chosen date for the Armenian genocide remembrance.The genocide began with the deportation and eventual killing of several hundred Armenian intellectuals at the hands of the Ottoman Empire. It’s estimated that up to 1.5 million ethnic Armenians were killed as a result of the genocide. Many of the descendants of Armenian genocide survivors reside right in Glendale, Calif., and many of those same descendants attend GCC.

 Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day, serves as a reminder of the millions of Armenian lives lost due to ethnic and religion based hatred, and also as a reminder of the need to prevent similar atrocities from ever happening again. It’s a chance to honor those who were victims and to pay tribute to and celebrate their descendants. Additionally, the day serves as an opportunity for the Armenian diaspora and others around the world to come together and show unity in the fight for recognition of the genocide. Despite overwhelming evidence of the injustices inflicted upon the Armenian people during World War I, the Turkish government, to this day, continues to deny that a genocide ever took place. As of 2023, 34 countries have recognized the Armenian genocide. On April 24, 2021, American President Joe Biden released a statement officially recognizing the events that took place as genocide, becoming the first American president to do so. 

An annual demonstration takes place every 24th of April, in front of the Turkish consulate in Beverly Hills, with demonstrators demanding that the Turkish government take action and finally recognize the genocide. Campus being closed on Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day gives students the opportunity to make their voices heard, and is reflective of the values of the community, which is comprised of many Armenian students, staff, and faculty.

Sevan Asatryan can be reached at [email protected].