Sofia University: New academic year starts on October 2

Written by on October 2, 2017 in Bulgaria - Comments Off on Sofia University: New academic year starts on October 2

The new academy year starts on October 2 at Sofia University. President Roumen Radev will officially launch it, at his Alma Mater.

This Bulgarian faculty ranks 651st among all universities on the planet. It was opened 129 years ago, on October 1 1888. When Sofia University’s main building was erected from 1924 to 1934, Evlogi Georgiev and Hristo Georgiev supported the construction financially.

Today, 16 faculties belong to this institution, including the ones of Biology, Chemistry and Pharmacy, Classical and Modern Philology, Economics and Business Administration, Education, Geology and Geography, History, Journalism, Law, Mathematics, Medicine, Philosophy, Physics, Pre-school and Primary School Education, Slavic Studies and Theology.

Right after its foundation, Sofia University had a total of seven lecturers and 49 students. Today, the number of the latter is more than 400 times higher. At this stage, it stands at about 21 000 students.

Only in 1904, this place actually became a university, after serving as a “pedagogical course” for a while.

Sofia University in the 1930-s.

Over time, Sofia University had its scandals too. When Prince Ferdinand opened the National Theatre in 1907, he was booed by students. As a result, the university was closed for half a year, while all lecturers were dismissed. Recently, a scandal erupted around Sofia University’s financial report.

After World War II, there were almost 14 000 students and 182 professors. The communists put their own professors in place, while firing those who disagreed with the measure, or with communism itself.

Over the years, Sofia University has had countless students who would later become famous. They included the former Presidents Georgi Parvanov, Petar Stoyanov and Zhelyu Zhelev, but also the mathematician Lyubomir Chakaloff and lots of other scientists, philosophers, astronomers and so forth.

In 2013 and 2014, students occupied the main university building, while protesting against the socialist Oresharski government and the oligarchy in Bulgaria. This led to a big controversy.

There is a name twin, which is Sofia University in Palo Alto, California, but it has nothing to do with the original. They used the word “sofia” since it means wisdom, in Greek.

Main photo by Antoniya Marinova Simeonova

 

 

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About the Author

Imanuel Marcus is Associate Editor of The Sofia Globe. He is German and lives in Sofia. Contact: imanuelmarcus (at) gmail.com