Los Angeles breaks ground on TUMO educational center

Los Angeles city officials Monday celebrated the groundbreaking of the first TUMO Technology Learning Center in the United States.

TUMO, originally founded in Armenia, is a free-of-charge educational program that aims to maximize teens' learning by building skills and self-confidence. The program offers educational and training opportunities in 14 different subjects, including music, filmmaking, robotics and 3D modeling.

"The creation of TUMO in the east San Fernando Valley will bring much needed creative and educational resources to low-income youth and teenagers that would otherwise not be exposed to the fantastic learning opportunities that TUMO creates," L.A. City Council President Paul Krekorian said in a statement. "This center will shape the next generation of creative leaders that will keep our entertainment industry strong and thriving."

During a morning conference, Mayor Karen Bass joined Krekorian, as well as former Assemblyman Adrin Nazarian and Sam Simonian, founder of Tumo, at the future site of TUMO LA, located at 4146 Lankershim Blvd. in North Hollywood.

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"We are committed to empowering Los Angeles' next generation of youth to gain skills that will prepare them for jobs in the technology industry," Bass said in a statement.

She added, "This center will allow Los Angeles youth to maximize their potential by discovering their passions for creative technologies and building the cutting-edge skills essential for navigating the ever-evolving digital world."

According to Krekorian's office, the center is expected to open in December 2024. It be located at an existing three-floor office space that requires remodeling.

The center was made possible through a $23.25 million dollar grant from the state, secured by Nazarian. Additionally, $3 million in federal funds also contributed to the project, thanks to efforts from Krekorian.

Last week, the L.A. City Council approved a motion seeking to allocate another $2.5 million to create an amphitheater on the building's roof.

Nazarian, who formerly represented parts of the east San Fernando Valley, said he was proud to support the TUMO center.

" The TUMO Technology Learning Center focuses on placing teenagers, aged 12 to 18 years, in control of their learning experiences and enabling them to unlock their full potential by identifying their passions and equipping them with the skills necessary to shape their future," Nazarian said in a statement. "This center will create life-changing experiences for our children and build the next generation of leaders for our communities."