Business Professor Asli Goksoy: ‘I knew in my heart and soul that AUBG was the right place'
Searching for a change and new challenges, Professor Asli Goksoy found her place at AUBG. The professor, who was born and raised in Istanbul and spent years studying and working in New York, knew that Bulgaria would be her new destination right after she interviewed for a teaching job at AUBG. Read our conversation with professor Goksoy to learn more about her professional journey, her experience living in Bulgaria, what she finds most challeging about teaching, and what she finds most rewarding.
Tell us a bit about yourself – where did you grow up and where have you studied and worked?
I was born and raised in Istanbul and moved to New York City when I was 21. That was one of the best decisions I have ever made in my life: A journey from one magnificent city to another one. After I earned my degree in economics, I did my MBA in Pace University, Lubin School of Business and worked in Monness, Crespi, Hardt & Co., Inc, a boutique equity research, and trading firm in NYC. It was an exciting, and challenging start for my career. But after having corporate jobs for 10 years, I started to envision a more rewarding career path, that I would want to pursue in the future. I wanted to develop passion by doing work that I find enjoyable and meaningful, then the answer was simple- academia. I worked full-time as a lecturer in one of the best private universities in Istanbul, while I pursued and completed my Ph.D.
What led you to AUBG?
I did enjoy my previous job, but I felt the challenge had gone out of it. It was time for a change. When the opportunity to become a member of the AUBG family was offered, I did not hesitate for a second, because I knew in my heart and soul, AUBG was the right place for a fascinating journey to new frontiers of teaching.
What are your favorite teaching topics and research interests?
Culture, managing people, international business, cross-cultural management, and communication are my favorite topics to teach. Organizational change and its subtitles such as employee resistance, mergers & acquisitions- is my passion for research.
What are some achievements in your professional field that you are especially proud of?
Receiving a book contract for my academic study made me feel proud of myself because it showed me I was on the right track as a researcher.
What are some traits that one can develop or gain thanks to business and research in the field?
I think in doing research, a significant trait for me is to develop a genuine sense of curiosity and have perseverance and a strong will, that is I should never quit despite the difficulties I may face. In our field, one can continue to be a learner throughout life. The other traits that one can develop is their conscience and their self-esteem.
If teaching was not your profession, what would have been?
It would be medical doctor- another job which is fascinating and helps others in an incredibly significant way like educators.
Has AUBG helped you develop personally and professionally and in what ways?
AUBG gives me resources and freedom to determine what I can achieve and what I need to accomplish. I'm challenged and at the same time encouraged to be better.
What is most challenging about your job? And what is most rewarding?
The most challenging part of my job is to keep a stimulating interaction with the students during the class due to their diverse knowledge level and different expectations. They have lots of intellectual property to share, but sometimes they are not active participants in the classroom. One of the most difficult aspects of my job is that there is always more that I can do. Whether it is improving the content or delivery of a course or conducting research.
Seeing students engaging their interest in my subject and sharing their feedback with me is highly rewarding- motivates me greatly. It is hard to say goodbye to my students when they graduate and leave AUBG, but when they return with a successful career and a wealth of stories to share with me, it is priceless.
What has been your experience living and working in Blagoevgrad and Bulgaria?
I came to Blagoevgrad for my job interview without my family. I remember calling my husband with a genuine smile on my face and confidence in my voice and saying to him, ‘Bulgaria is our new destination, trust me’. We lived in Sofia for three years. We loved it, as it is a relaxed and welcoming city with a distinct blend of history and west-influenced outlooks, offered a fascinating mix of experiences to us. Blagoevgrad is so peaceful and safe, the caring and helpful locals make this place so unique and special.
Apart from your hard work in your professional field, what do you enjoy doing in your free time?
I love traveling and swimming. I enjoy taking different fun courses such as history of art and cooking with my daughters. I also love going to the movies, heater, and classical music concerts on a regular base in my free time.