AYF Camp Haiastan presents summer 2023 leadership team

FRANKLIN, Mass. — The AYF Camp Haiastan Board of Directors is pleased to announce the 2023 camp management staff.

Nairi Koroghlian (Long Island City, New York) will be the 2023 Summer Camp Director, and Ani Changelian will return to AYF Camp Haiastan this summer to direct the day camp. The Board has also selected a Program Director, a new position responsible for developing and organizing curriculum specific activities and schedules for Camp Haiastan’s programs. This role will be filled by former Summer Director Seran Tcholakian of Farmington Hills, MI.

Nairi Koroghlian

Koroghlian has a long history with the Camp, starting as a camper in the early-to-mid ’80s and then serving on staff in the early ’90s. Her love for the Camp was established through her parents Harry and Claire Kushigian. Now, she’s part of a Camp Haiastan Summer Director legacy. Her father, also known as “Baron Harry,” was a Camp Haiastan counselor from the late 1950s to the early 1960s and later served as the 1962 Summer Director when he, along with former Summer Camp Director Mesrob Odian, started the ‘History of the Camp’ lecture, which is now a mainstay ‘Hye Talk’ delivered to staff and campers every year.

Koroghlian draws upon more than 20 years of professional experience in various roles ranging from marketing to theater and film. Most recently, she has been a leader in the health and wellness industry, serving as a coach for large organizations throughout Manhattan, including Sesame Street and Weight Watchers International. At the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, she worked as a volunteer crisis responder for, an organization that brings awareness to mental health and suicide prevention.

“I am thrilled to return to the ‘best place on earth’ this summer to inspire a love for our Armenian heritage for our youth and create a nurturing experience for fostering friendships and cultural pride,” expressed Koroghlian.

Koroghlian is a native of Rhode Island and a University of Rhode Island graduate. She resides in New York City with her husband Haig. The two met as campers at Camp Haiastan.

Ani Changelian

Camp Haiastan is looking forward to Changelian’s return as director of the day camp. “Ani’s extensive knowledge of the Camp and her experience with children greatly benefit our youth,” stated Board chairman Hratch Najarian.

Changelian received a master’s degree in education from the New York Institute of Technology, Downing College. She lives in Bedford, Massachusetts with her husband Andrew and their two children, former campers and staff members. Changelian previously worked as a kindergarten teacher at St. Stephen’s Armenian Elementary School in Watertown and also served as the AYF Camp Haiastan Summer Director from 2019-2021.

Seran Tcholakian

Tcholakian, a camper for many years, is now the inaugural Program Director at Camp Haiastan. A native of New York, Tcholakian lives in Farmington Hills, Michigan with her husband Rafi and their five children, former campers and staffers. A graduate of Hunter College, Tcholakian taught for many years at the Alex and Marie Manoogian School in Dearborn. She is now a tutor and an active member of her local Armenian community through the Armenian Relief Society (ARS).

This new position will bring an increased level of attention to the Camp’s various programs and ensure that all activities are engaging for young campers. Following her recent stint as summer director (2019 – 2021), Tcholakian has proven that she understands the needs of the campers and staff to ensure a positive, developmentally appropriate and magical experience.

“We are excited to kick-off the 2023 summer season with this strong leadership team,” stated executive director Kenar Charchaflian. “Serving as an AYF Camp Haiastan staff member goes beyond the reward of impacting the future youth of our community. For generations, our grounds have served as a place of opportunity to learn new skills, to build friendships and to grow professionally and individually.”

Staff applications are open through the 20th of March. Application deadlines are below.

March 14th – Aquatics Director, Armenian School Teacher, Lifeguard, Health Center Staff, Kitchen Staff, Summer Office Administrator
March 20th – Cabin Counselor, Day Camp Counselor, Staff In Training (SIT)

This article was original published on The Armenian Weekly.


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