Asya Minkova (’18): Commencement Speech

May 25, 2018
Asya Minkova (’18): Commencement Speech

The AUBG Class of 2018 student commencement speaker was Asya Minkova from Bulgaria. Read below her speech:

Dear faculty, friends, family, distinguished guests,

Dear fellow graduates,

A well-deserved “Congratulations!” For being here, for sharing this moment, and for making it to the finish line!

We have all met in one way or another – be it in a classroom, a student club, or another kind of club. Some of us will meet again at a workplace, others will start mutual ventures, or create families. We are stepping out of AUBG braver, freer, and better.

Some long nights against the procrastination ago, desperately running to a class, a Resident Assistant friend stopped me and gave me a letter to self from our Orientation Week. I had written, “Fall in love”. I laughed at what I read.

Love? I thought. Love was definitely not what I felt while running from Main Building to BAC and back to Main Building.

Love. This wasn’t the verb I would have used to express how I felt about the long sleepless nights, the group projects, the morning classes, the club meetings, the drama with the first boyfriend, the second boyfriend, the thir… OK, you get the point. It wasn’t love. It felt silly to think of love as a vital part of our time at university.

We have been told that reason is the way to the truth, right? And we have preferred logic, not passion or love, to engage in heated discussions. But as today approached, I felt this ache in my heart as I knew I’ll have to fly away from AUBG. I realized I am in love. It has been love this whole time!

Love that provoked our families to let us leave home and come here from every corner of the country and the world to pursue our passions! Love that brought us here on this day! Love that our professors have been teaching us without our knowledge! We have learned not only how to think, but also what the importance of this love is. We have learned that for something to be meaningful it doesn’t need a function.

The core of love is to find great happiness in something or someone for what it simply is. This love isn’t a strange concept I’ve come up with. It is something AUBG inspires us to feel. Something, we have all experienced.

We felt this love late at night while studying in a lobby. We felt it while waiting for permission for classes. And while talking to professors for an hour, even though they gave you a 10-minute slot. We felt it as we looked forward to another team building. And when we knew we have midterms and presentations, but still hung out with friends.

These moments of love may have been completely unrelated to school. We might have felt the unconditional joy of going to the banichka place late at night, because…finals week makes us exceptionally hungry. Or the late-night trips from Underground to Skapto, which I will only mention without any details. We felt it in the long conversations we had even though we had met to study. Yes, study… We have created friendships. We have bonded. We have built this great happiness together. We have found the love.

We might not remember the best marketing strategy or how to apply quantitative methods in economics. Instead, we will remember the moments of love.

These moments will remind us of the countless forms of loving. And by carrying this love, we let AUBG stay with us forever!

In a world, that demands benefit, productivity, effectiveness and efficiency, we’ll use the love that we have learned. It will urge us to take the ordinary and look for the extraordinary.

And perhaps, the power to love, to see endless possibilities no matter where we are, is what makes all those sleepless nights worth it after all.

Congratulations, class of 2018!