Who We Are
One of eighteen UWC schools and colleges around the world, UWC Dilijan is the first international residential school in the CIS region and the only UWC in the post-Soviet space and the Middle East. The college brings together more than 200 youngsters from 80+ countries of the world.
The idea of creating the Dilijan International School of Armenia was conceived by impact investors and social entrepreneurs Ruben Vardanyan and Veronika Zonabend in 2006. The Founding Patrons – Noubar and Anna Afeyan, Gagik Adibekyan, Vladimir and Anna Avetissian and an anonymous benefactor – supported the idea, and nearly 330 donors from across the world also joined the initiative.
United World College Dilijan was officially opened on 11 October 2014. The first cohort of 94 students from 49 countries entered UWC Dilijan in August 2014. In the academic year 2020/21, UWC Dilijan became home for 226 students from 80+ countries.
The College offers a two year International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (IBDP) for students aged 16 to 18. UWC Dilijan provides its intentionally diverse, global community of students a transformative, two-year, residential education with the UWC movement's core values at the fore. Living and learning with students and staff of different cultures and backgrounds is an essential feature of the College.
UWC Dilijan is looking for young people, who are passionate learners and are well-suited to the challenge of a rigorous curriculum and an experiential learning environment, who share the mission and values of the UWC movement and are committed to becoming changemakers for a better world. Places at UWC are awarded on the basis of merit and potential, and the initial selection is a ‘needs blind’ admissions process. Scholarships, both full and partial, are available through the National Committee selection process. Students who do not require scholarships can also apply through direct admissions via the General Selection Programme.
UWC Dilijan College is the 14th member of the United World Colleges movement with a mission to make education a force to unite people, nations and cultures for peace and a sustainable future. The UWC movement was founded in 1962 based on the ideas of a German educator Kurt Hahn, who believed schooling should be a preparation for life, not just for university. UWC offers a challenging educational experience to a deliberately diverse group of students and places a high value on experiential learning, community service, and outdoor activities.
UWC fosters a lifelong commitment to social responsibility and, to date, it has inspired a worldwide network of more than 60,000 alumni, who believe it is possible to take action and make a difference locally, nationally and internationally. You can find UWC alumni among politicians and presidents of many countries, as well as among notable business leaders, researchers, famous writers and artists.
Currently, the international UWC family comprises of 18 colleges in 18 countries, 160 National Committees run by 3,000 volunteers that carry out the selection process every year and 9,000 students educated each year.
What Is Special About Us
- The International Baccalaureate (IB DP) Programme recognised by universities worldwide with the curriculum taught in English.
- CAS is the core part of the UWC experience, allowing students to develop their interpersonal skills through experiential learning and to go on a journey of self-discovery by overcoming personal challenges. While other IB schools demand only the minimum requirements, UWC schools and colleges conduct more CAS in one term than other schools do in the whole year - and many UWC students see their CAS activities as their most essential UWC experience.
- Variety of student-led projects and service programmes with measurable social impact mainly aimed at engaging with the local community and environment.
- Among the most impactful community services are Science with Kids, Dilinglish, Swimming for Beginners, Ceramics with the Community, ORRAN and many more.
- Outdoor activities are offered throughout the week as part of the CAS programme, and on weekends where we are able to venture further afield for day and overnight trips to camp and explore. Outdoor programmes are also part of our project weeks and include trekking in Goris, hiking in Vayots Dzor, climbing in Noravank Canyon and sailing on Lake Sevan. Have a look at this video to learn more!
- Upon their arrival to UWC Dilijan, students accomplish 4-6 weeks of Armenian classes, after which some of them choose to continue their studies.
- Owing to the new educational and cultural initiatives emerging here, Dilijan has been transforming into a vibrant city. With its current development plan and perspectives, Dilijan is currently the fastest-growing urban settlement in Armenia.
The Changemakers' School
Imagine being a part of a diverse community, that offers you IB Diploma - Globally Recognized Academic Programme, merit based scholarships, nurtures your creativity and offers you over 25 extracurricular activities. Imagine having first class amenities and everything a student would wish for. Now imagine all this coming true at the Changemakers' School - UWC Dilijan.
Life in UWC Dilijan
A brief tour around the campus, where you can learn more about the campus facilities available to the students and staff, about the academics, the co-curricular life and so much more.
From Ethiopia to Harvard: the story of Workneh
Our alumnus Workneh grew up in a small village called Matala in Southern Ethiopia. His childhood was challenging, he worked as a shoeshine boy in order to buy kerosene that he used at night to study. At the age of 16 Workneh applied for a scholarship and was selected for his talent and persistence, passion for learning and unfailing empathy. Watch Workneh’s inspirational video story and see how UWC Dilijan transformed his life!
UWC Dilijan’s 5th Anniversary
On October 18, 2019 UWC Dilijan marked its 5th anniversary. In five short years, the college has turned from a mystery grand construction site to an integral part of the town, a member of the UWC movement, an important player in the region and an active participant in the development and internationalization of Armenia. Hospitable people of Dilijan continue to welcome the diverse international community and make UWC Dilijan’s staff and students feel at home. Here is what UWCD is today!
UWC Dilijan has five generations of alumni from 2016 to 2020, many of whom continue their education at leading universities worldwide – Princeton, Yale, Harvard, Brown, Columbia, UCL, Duke, Berkeley, McGill, University of Edinburgh, Minerva School at KGI, and many more. Many UWC graduates become Davis Scholars, attending one of the 99 partner institutions in the USA via the Shelby Davis scholarship programme.
Alumni stay an integral part of the UWC Dilijan community even after graduation and visit the school frequently, 20% return to volunteer. Read our alumni stories here.
Initiated as a platform for engaging the young alumni into the UWC Dilijan activities on campus in Dilijan resulted in a larger programme in Armenia and Russia that now partners with around 10 foundations and their projects.
The programme provides the recent alumni with part-time job opportunities over summer and winter breaks for the period from 2 weeks to 2 and a half months. This is an amazing opportunity for young people to contribute to the development of the school, Dilijan, Armenia and UWC movement while gaining new skills and knowledge in the areas of their fields of study and interests. The interns work with different partner organisations in Dilijan - Dilijan Community Center, Central Bank of Armenia, IDeA Foundation, Small Theatre in Yerevan, Cafe #2 and others.
Ask us a question
For media inquiries and general information about the school, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
We are happy to organise interviews with our leadership, staff, students or alumni.