The Enterprise Incubator Foundation is deeply involved in educational projects and initiatives as part of its overarching mission to build a strong technological ecosystem in Armenia and facilitate business-academia ties. This time we want to focus on updates about two of such initiatives: the master’s programs on Materials Science and Data Science for Business, taught at the Yerevan State University (YSU) and supported by EIF and PMI Science.

Materials Science Master’s Program

This year, with the support of EIF and PMI Science, YSU launched the Materials ScienceMaster’s Program, which was developed with the assistance of leading experts from the University of Notre Dame, the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, and Huawei Technologies. The program complies with international standards and will graduate scientists who can work in a wide range of fields: mechanical engineering, microelectronics, mining, chemical and food production, drug and cosmetic production, environmental protection, agriculture, as well as other related fields.

The lectures are to be conducted by top-class experts. To add a practical element to the program, some of the training will be held at partner organizations. The program also offers the possibility for students to cover the tuition fee through an income tax refund.

The admission process started in June and passed in two stages. In total, 4 students have enrolled in the course through a competitive examination, they will study at the Faculty of Chemistry at YSU. More students applied in the second stage, which reflects the growing interest in the program as the news about it spread. According to Armen Galstyan, Vice Dean of the Faculty of Chemistry at YSU and the Head of Materials Science Master’s Program, the fact that the program has just been launched plays a role.

“We decided to admit students based on the results of the exam, no additional procedures were held. All applicants, who passed the required threshold, were admitted into the course,” said Armen Galstyan.

Data Science for Business Master’s Program

The Data Science for Business Master’s Program runs since 2017. It was created jointly by the EIF, the YSU, the Innovative Solutions and Technologies Center (ISTC) with the support of PMI Science. The two-year program teaches young specialists to work with large-scale data in the key areas of business intelligence, customer analytics, data modeling, and management. There is a strong element of international collaboration in this program, as it cooperates with San Jose State University (SJSU, USA).

Students are admitted to this course through a competitive examination, and the admission process is held in two stages. This year the program has 12 students in total, selected from 19 applicants. The 4 students, who earned top marks in the entrance exam and the interview, were provided scholarship spots.

Ruben Gevorgyan, YSU professor and Head of the Data Science for Business Master’s Program has shared thoughts with us, noting:

“We aim to select students, for whom this level of higher education is a conscious choice. As for competition with other universities, the conditions are not that fair, because ours is the only master’s program that doesn’t benefit from the state tax exemption.”

We also heard from Rafael Antonyan, a 1st-course student enrolled in the Data Science for Business Master’s Program.

“This field is highly relevant, and our lecturers are young professionals who combine modern methods and elements of traditional academic education,” he said. “When we finish the program, we will have a wide range of employment opportunities: in the public sector, in the private sector, in science. It’s good to see that the demand for data scientists is growing in our country’s labor market, this means the importance of our profession is increasing.”

It goes without saying that no advance can be achieved in any field without good specialists. EIF attaches particular importance to education and training as the foundation for creating generations of top-class experts.