Long-Awaited Face-to-Face Alumni Gathering Discusses University Developments, AUBG’s 30th Anniversary
The first-in-a-long-time in-person alumni reception gathered administration and graduates together at the university’s Elieff Center in Sofia on July 6. AUBG President Dr. David Evans welcomed the guests and spoke about the latest university developments, while Communications Development Specialist Martin Georgiev ('16) gave a preview of the activities planned for AUBG’s 30th Anniversary.
Evans thanked the graduates for their active support during the difficult past year and a half, saying that fiscal 2021 was among the years with the largest alumni donations despite the many challenges posed by the pandemic. The Student Support Fund, led by faculty, staff, alumni, and the board, and generously supported by the America for Bulgaria Foundation, helped students who faced financial difficulties during the COVID-19 crisis. “The generosity and responsiveness of the alumni to that call enabled us to help our students keep things going,” the president said.
Among the latest news at the university is the appointment of Michael Marvin as Chair of the Board of Trustees. He has served on dozens of not-for-profit, public and private company boards and has extensive experience in public and private educational institutions at every level. “The Board of Trustees is in very good hands,” Evans said. “We are excited to work with Mike and advance the university.”
The president then outlined the priorities of the five-year AUBG strategic plan, saying that the university is looking into new academic programs and has recently signed a memorandum of understanding with ARC Academy for a collaboration that aims to bring innovative educational opportunities to the AUBG students. Evans also introduced alumna Karina Ulucheva (‘07) who was appointed Vice President for Strategy and Institutional Effectiveness, a new senior leadership position created on the advice of the Board of Trustees to support the strategic plan and to respond quickly and thoroughly to the university’s need for process improvements, internal controls, and policy revision and documentation.
Martin Georgiev then took the floor to offer a preview of the many celebrations planned for AUBG’s 30th anniversary, which will fall under the slogan “Onwards and Upwards,” a phrase often used by AUBG founder Dimi Panitza. Among the upcoming activities are an exhibition in Sofia and Blagoevgrad showcasing the best of AUBG, a day-long festival for the university and town community, the long-awaited Mega Reunion, and an academic conference that will host faculty from across the world on campus.