From a former Tornado to an AP


By Ryan Avakian and Leo Piloyan

Who would have thought that a Hoover High School graduate would come back and get a position as the Assistant Principal?

Well, that’s what the new assistant principal Avik Yahiayan did.

Yahiayan, after graduating high school, attended Glendale Community College, then transferred to UC Irvine then transferred to Cal State Northridge, and took all the prerequisites to qualify to get into dental and medical school. All of that gave him a lot of expertise in science and he applied to medical school and got into a biomedical science program. 

He was about to become a successful dentist until Yahiayan tried teaching and loved it and decided to go down the path of teaching instead of medical school. 

“I never looked back on my decision to switch paths and this is my 10th or eleventh year of teaching throughout my career,” he said.

Yahiayan also taught AP science classes and was also enlisted in LAUSD for half his career and the other half in GUSD.

He used to be a student in Hoover and was a graduate of the class of 2003.

“Twenty years ago if you asked me what I wanted to do as a job I definitely would not have a answer for you, I thought my life would be something else but looking back all the experience I learned and the time I spent to get here, I lived it and I loved every second of it,” he said.

Yahiayan was actually born in Brooklyn, New York and moved to Glendale when he was young with his family. Yahiayan has shown all of GUSD that life is full of surprises. 

He is 37 years old; he is also a husband and a father to three daughters. 

“The best part of being an assistant principal is I get to talk to all students on the campus, and hear their stories, and hear their journey, and get to work with a lot more students, so that’s my favorite thing to do,” he said. “I love the students, parents and the staff. I just love seeing the bigger picture and all the pieces that go together to make school functional everyday, so it’s a fun and exciting journey.”

Yahiayan did not particular apply or choose this school, when he applied to be an assistant principal, he didn’t know where he was going to end up.

“I never thought I would be here, but it is amazing, and I am very lucky to be here,” he said. “It’s a great coincidence.There are staff members in the office, who greet you everyday, there are some who are still here, there are lots of teachers. There are at least five or six teachers that I have had, that are still here. So it’s very nice to work with them side by side, as my colleagues. We’re a team now and that leads to never burning your bridges, because you never know who you’re going to come across and who you’re going to know and meet in the future.

“So once you’re a part of the Hoover family,  then eventually leave Hoover, and when you find another person who went to Hoover, you connect to them, and it doesn’t matter whether your age difference is 20 years or 30 years apart, you built that connection, it’s a way of a very big and strong network of Hoover.”

This is the perfect example of Hoover’s spirit, which is to be “Ohana.”

Yahiayan proved to the whole school that being in the same school doesn’t just mean that you have to see that same person everyday, he proved that all students at Hoover are Ohana. 

In other words, “we are family.”