Turkey/Armenia Board


The Olive Tree Initiative at UCLA is run by an Executive Board of very dedicated students who work in conjunction with the University Advisory Board, Community Oversight Board, and National Board to make OTI at UCLA a success.
The day to day operations of the group would not be possible without the incredible students behind OTI.

Those students selected to be on the Executive Board will have the opportunity to work with incredible world leaders, and also be given access to world-class internship opportunities in Washington DC and abroad. Though being on Executive Board is no guarantee of selection for the annual trip, performance throughout the year is highly taken into consideration. In addition, there are Committees under most Board members, who are also just as instrumental of OTI's growth.

Executive Board 2015-2016

 Adnan Khoja, Co-President

 Major: Geography

 Year: Junior

Adnan Khoja is a third year student majoring in geography and minoring in geospatial information systems. Currently, he is not working or interning anywhere. However, he hopes to work in the field of international marketing. In the past, he has had the opportunities to conduct research over the summer as an intern for Syria Direct, a news organisation.

This summer and last, Adnan has had the fortune to travel to Turkey, Georgia, and Armenia with the Olive Tree Initiative, where he had the opportunity to meet and talk to many government officials, civil society organisers, and businessmen.   




    Hasmik Hmayakyan, Co-President 

    Major: Political Science 

    Concentration:  International Relations 

    Year: Junior 

Hasmik Hmayakyan is a third year Political Science major concentrating in international relations and minoring in Philosophy. Currently, she works at a law office as a legal assistant. She also interned at the district office of a Congressman from the US House of Representatives, where she enhanced her knowledge of federal legislation. This Fall, Hasmik will have the opportunity to intern with Human Rights Watch, where she hopes to learn about international human rights abuses.

Over the summer, Hasmik had the opportunity to travel to Armenia, Turkey, and Georgia with the Olive Tree Initiative, where she enjoyed meeting with politicians, diplomats, and think tanks to discuss conflict development in the region.



Saliha Yaylaci is a second year Civil Engineering major who is trying to switch her major to Computer Engineering.  She is currently in the process of figuring out what she wants her future to be like.  Although her major is science and math based, she is highly interested in politics, social sciences, and religious studies.  Throughout her life, Saliha had the opportunity to observe the various cultures and beliefs practiced in Turkey; thus, she has a specific interest over the relations between Turkey and Armenia.  She has not been to Armenia yet, but, she wishes to visit there.