Class 2008 Received Their Tickets to the Future

May 19, 2008

This year 248 students from 18 different countries received their diplomas at the official ceremony, which took place on May 18, 2008 in Blagoevgrad. Valedictorians of the class became Anna Tomova, Bulgaria, and Izabela Vlahu, Macedonia, who graduated with GPA 3.98.

At the ceremony 21 students from the fifth class of the Executive Masters program in Business Administration at AUBG also received their diplomas.

Honorary degree “Doctor Honoris Causa” was awarded to His Excellency John Beyrle, the US ambassador to Bulgaria, who was also a keynote speaker at the fourteenth commencement ceremony. In his address to the guests Beyrle said: “We must work together to build societies based on tolerance and democratic values, societies where people do not fear those who are different from them, societies where people of different nationalities and religions live and work peacefully together. This is not dream. The American University in Bulgaria is a vivid proof that we can build such societies.” He considers the most valuable lesson that a University teaches its students is not to be: “…afraid to ask hard questions, not afraid to challenge the common wisdom, not afraid to speak your mind. That’s what makes you, and your University, different from others. This is a laboratory for inventing new ideas and new ways of thinking.”

Greetings to the graduating students sent Mr. Flanagan, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of AUBG, the AUBG President Dr. Huwiler and the Deputy Minister of Education and Science of the Republic of Bulgaria Vania Dobreva on behalf of Mr. Daniel Valchev - Minister of Education and Science. On behalf of the students Andreaa Ceplinschi (BA) and Manol Peykov (EMBA) gave salutatory speeches.

Manol Peykov, Class of 1995, belongs to the legendary first AUBG Class that produced a number of successful leaders and entrepreneurs now working all over the world. On Sunday he received his Masters Diploma. In his moving speech he talked about his relationship with AUBG which "has been a veritable love affair." For
“love is not love,
which alters when it alteration finds,
or bends with the remover to remove…
…If this be error, and upon me proved
I never spoke, nor no man ever loved.”

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