On March 22-26 students of Master' program “Genocide Studies” of YSU  Institute for Armenian Studies visited Istanbul accompanied by the head of the  Armenian-Ottoman Department of IAS, PhD in philology, associate professor Lusine Sahakyan and researcher, PhD in Philology Diana Hayrapetyan. The trip was partly sponsored by “Hrant Dink” foundation. The aim of the visit was to introduce the students the activities of  Armenian centers in Istanbul, to create a feedback, to exchange materials, and to aquire a professional literature. During their trip the students had  an opportunity  to participate in the lecture on national minorities in Turkey  held in Bilgi University, to visit Islamic Research Center in Scutari and a number important historical and cultural places. 

  On the first day the students visited Armenian cemetery in Scutari (now Üsküdar) paying tribute to the prominent Western Armenian writers and figures buried there, such as Petros Duryan, as well as Balyan  family  (famous architects in the Ottoman Empire). On the same day the students visited Dolmabahce palace built by the Armenian prominent architects.  On the second day the students were in “Hrant Dink” foundation, where a meeting-discussion was held with foundation coordinators Burcu Becermen, Cem Arslan  and Vahakn Keshishian. During the meeting  the coordinators introduced the activities, implemented programs and the working methods  of the foundation. An agreement was reached between the students and the foundation to exchange professional literature and materials. At the end of the discussion the students presented themes of their MA theses and got recommendations on the used literature and the themes. 
 On the third day the students visited Bilgi University of Istanbul by the invitation of historian Bülent Bilmez. The latter is a professor in the faculty of History, who founded a Center for Study of National Minorities in Turkey. The above mentioned Center is not recognized officially by Turkish Republic, and studies held in the center are implemented on voluntary basis. The past and current issues of minorities, their ethnic manifestations and identity perceptions were discussed during the meeting. On the same day the students visited Hagia Sophia Mosque.  
  On the fourth day the studnets visited the library of Center for Islamic Studies, where they were introduced the library activities, registration process and online surveys. The students got an opportunity to study materials about the Armenians (most of which were unfortunately filtered). An agreement was reached between head of the library and head of the Armenian-Ottoman Relations Department to use the library materials in future. 
    On the last day of the visit YSU lecturers and the students met the staff of “Agos” periodical. During the meeting the editor of the Armenian section Bagrat Estukian introduced the activities and role of the periodical in the Armenian community, as well as spoke about the current problems of the Community and the activities to solve them. On the same day YSU lecturers and students were hosted in Araz publishing house, where they got acquainted with published books, works by Diaspora modern writers, and republished works by Western-Armenian writers. The books are published in Western Armenian, Turkish and English.   
   During their trip the students had an opportunity to meet Hemshin intellectuals living in Istanbul and to learn about their cultural achievements.