AUBG Announces University Council Essay Winners for 2020
For a second year in a row, Iliyana Nalbantova (’20) got the first prize in the AUBG University Council Essay Competition. What helped her win this time were her thoughtful reflections on this year’s topic, 'How might we use the learnings from the coronavirus pandemic to advance humanity?' Monica Dimitrova and Natalia Chicu (’20) won second and third place, respectively, in a competition among 21 AUBG students with keen interest in academic writing.
“For me, the University Council Essay Competition has been a great platform to think critically and creatively about the pressing issues of the day,” said Nalbantova, who graduated this May with a major in Political Science and International Relations and plans to continue her studies on the subject in a graduate school. “I think that students in the liberal arts tend to be very well equipped to address emerging global challenges because of our multi-disciplinary perspective and exposure to diversity of both backgrounds and worldviews.”
An annual tradition, the University Council Essay is an opportunity for AUBG students to share their thoughts on the state of the world. It was only fitting that this year’s topic asked them to explore the ways humanity can learn from the COVID-19 crisis.
“This year has developed unexpectedly for all of us,” Dimitrova, who studies Business Administration and Economics at AUBG, said. “Fortunately, our professors adapted quickly to the situation, and this encouraged me to be more aware and interested in what is happening in the world around me. In addition to a few projects we did on the subject in class, I attended [several] online seminars on the effects of the pandemic (…) All of this, along with my curiosity, helped me greatly [in the competition.]”
Chicu, who graduated in May with a major in Business Administration and minors in Integrated Marketing Communications and Entrepreneurship, said she aspires to become a socially conscious leader and that academic writing has helped her realize that expressing one’s opinion is both “a big responsibility” and a social duty. “I realized that if you want to make a change in the world, you need to speak up,” she said.