Following the regulations of the Bulgarian Ministry of Health and the best global practices, we will keep the green pass requirement to attend on-ground classes and to access the AUBG campus. But due to the spread of the Omicron variant, we made some adjustments to the Green Pass Campus Policies presented last semester:
- In-person classes will remain hybrid. Students will again be split into eagles and lions to ensure social distancing in the classroom;
- Masks will remain mandatory in all indoor public areas (except for classrooms when social distancing is ensured);
- Last semester’s measures will remain in effect
If you want to, you will be able to change your student status for the Spring ’22 semester (on-campus, off-campus or online). An upcoming email from Provost White will show the status you’ve already selected, as well as instructions on how to change it (deadline is 8:00 am on Tuesday, Jan. 11). If you don’t want to change your status, you don’t need to do anything further.
In terms of fees, this is how we’ll proceed:
- If you decide to switch from online to off-campus, you will need to pay the meal plan fee;
- If you decide to switch from online to on-campus, you will need to pay the housing and meal plan fees;
- If you decide to switch from off-campus to on-campus, you will need to pay the housing fee;
- If you decide to switch from on-campus to off-campus or online, AUBG will refund your respective fees.
This semester you don’t need to get tested when you arrive for your campus check-in as we will be relying on your green pass. Those of you who still haven't sent your Green Passes to the AUBG Health Center, please do so at your earliest convenience. This will help us optimally organize the university processes.
I would like to reassure you that in case the situation improves or confirms that it is safe enough to change some of the measures, we will revisit the policies in place.
The American University in Bulgaria will become a GreenPass Campus in Spring '22
The American University in Bulgaria will become a GreenPass Campus in Spring '22, meaning that all students will be required to have a green pass to attend classes, campus events and other university activities on-ground. This new university policy will replace the previous rotational hybrid model.
"This is not a decision we took lightly," said AUBG President Dr. David Evans in an email correspondence. "However, given the severity of the pandemic situation in the country and the current COVID-19-related government orders, this is the only right thing to do. We took this decision in order to keep our community safe and in order to restore as much normalcy to our educational process as we can in the surrounding circumstances."
The Bulgarian government has introduced a green pass system in the country at the end of October, tightening restrictive measures as a response to dramatically rising COVID-19 cases. According to the new government order, most indoor activities, including attending university, require a Green Pass (one can obtain a Green Pass by being vaccinated, having a positive PCR test within the last 12 months, or a negative PCR or antigen test within the last 48-72 hours.) "Introducing the Green Pass system is currently the only possible way to have on-ground classes in the country," Evans said. "And while most universities in Bulgaria have decided to move entirely online following the latest regulations, AUBG is trying to figure out a way to make the Green Pass system work. Over the years, AUBG has established itself as a thought-leader in Bulgaria. Now is the time to act responsibly, pave the way forward, and become a model for the rest of the country." Students with Green Passes will be able to attend all their lectures and events on-ground and will not be required to wear masks during classes, club events and in the residence halls. The deadline for choosing an on-campus, off-campus or online status for Spring ‘22 is Nov. 22 and the room selection procedure for Spring 2022 will be in the period of Nov. 29 - Dec. 3.
Students can read additional information on the new order here and attend a virtual meeting with university representatives on Nov. 10 at 4 p.m.
The Student Support Fund for COVID-19-related financial difficulties is again open for applications and the deadline for submitting the form is November 12. Decisions will be announced before Nov. 22. Students without a vaccine certificate or a positive PCR test within the last 12 months should be tested in one of the certified labs in Blagoevgrad. Here is the list of certified medical centers which are authorized to issue a Green Pass in the town of Blagoevgrad:
- Medical Center-1-Blagoevgrad (МЦ -1-БЛАГОЕВГРАД" ЕООД)
- MBAL Blagoevgrad (МБАЛ Благоевград)
- Medical diagnostic laboratory Medilab (МДЛ Медилаб ООД)
- Medical Center Puls (МЦ Пулс)
- Medical diagnostic laboratory Unidiamed (МДЛ Унидиамед ООД)
- Medical diagnostic laboratory Ramus (МДЛ Рамус ООД)
The Health Center will assist students who have documented medical exemption from the vaccine, or who have not yet received their long-term residency card and thus cannot be vaccinated in Bulgaria, to get a Green Pass. These students should get in touch with the Health Center in a timely manner. The Ministry of Health orders override AUBG's internal policies and new government orders may mean that the university has to change plans. "Once again, I urge you to get vaccinated unless you have medical reasons that prevent you from getting the vaccine," Evans wrote. "The statistical data on the inverse correlation between vaccination rates and COVID-19 related deaths is irrefutable. Please, get informed on the truths and myths about the vaccine from reputable and verified sources. We have compiled some of them here. By choosing to get the vaccine, we do not only protect ourselves but also the more vulnerable members of our community."
Vaccines are the smartest massively accessible invention medicine has come up with. With vaccines, we master the circumstances and are not bound to be mastered by them.
Dr. Slaveyko Djambazov, PhD (EMBA '10)
International healthcare expert in health investments and policies
Skaptopara I Residence Hall
(+359 73) 888 207
Prevention of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) in Bulgarian
Prevention of Coronavirous Disease (COVID-19) in English