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In the summer of 2002 the Bulgarian-American Commission for Educational Exchange launched a new initiative aimed at introducing a transnational component in its exchange activities. This was the first Fulbright International Summer Institute (FISI) which took place in Pamporovo on August 4-18, 2002. Participating in it were 35 students from 12 countries in Europe, Asia and the U.S. Among them were the new U.S. Fulbrighters who were to spend the AY 02-03 in Bulgaria.
FISI 2002 gave the participants the opportunity to attend nine courses in a variety of fields. The courses were taught in English by distinguished American, European and Bulgarian professors, most of whom were Fulbright grantees and alumni.
FISI 2002 also offered an exciting cultural program to show the participants the achievements of Bulgarian culture and the magic of Bulgarian nature. The highlight of the first week was a one-day trip to Trigrad gorge and two remarkable caves, Yagodina and Devil’s Throat. This was followed by a visit to the Rozhen Observatory on Peak Rozhen which ended with a concert of Bulgaria’s phenomenal folk singer Valya Balkanska. During the second FISI weekend the FISI students visited the historic city of Plovdiv and the Bachkovo Monastery.
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