Since the foundation of the First Republic of Armenia in 1918 the issue of university foundation was on the agenda and many of our outstanding intellectual personalities did their best to realize this dream. But many problems existed and questions were unsolved especially the issues of building and hostel, professorial staff involvement and their provision with housing, publishing of manuals and textbooks.
In 1918-1919 the issue was discussed by the Council of Ministers of the RA. Initially they decided to move to Yerevan the Transcaucasian Private University from Tbilisi, as 700 students from total 1715 and 25 lecturers from 76 were Armenians. But the hard conditions of the country did not let to realize this idea. Later the Ministry of Public Education made the suggestion to found a University in Armenia.
The decision to found a University in Yerevan was made by the RA Council of Ministers on the 16th of May of 1919. The budget of this HEI had 5 million rubles. Four departments functioned in its structure: historical-philological, economics and law, medical and physico-mathematical, but the issue of the building was still on the agenda.
And the process of building selection started. As there was no corresponding building in Yerevan it was decided to found the University in Alexandrapols Trade School. The City Municipality allocated four rooms for the full-time classes as well as twelve rooms for half-time classes.
So, the official opening ceremony of the University of Armenia took place on the 31st of January in 1920 in Alexandrapol, where the members of the RA Government, representatives of political parties and others were present. Yuri Ghambaryan was appointed the first Rector of our University. The lessons started on the 1st of February.