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FISI 2011

The tenth edition of the Fulbright International Summer Institute (FISI) took place in the town of Bansko between August 08 and 20, 2011. FISI attracted 90 participants from 15 countries: Bulgaria, the U.S., Albania, Belarus, Croatia, Denmark, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Pakistan, Portugal, Russia, Serbia, UK and Ukraine.

FISI 2011 was another example of successful collaboration of several institutions – the Bulgarian-American Fulbright Commission, Sofia University St. Kliment Ohridski, the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, America for Bulgaria Foundation, and the Euro-Mediterranean University (EMUNI). Students from Sofia University were offered credit courses as part of their Master’s program in language and communication. Twenty-seven MBA students from the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan took the course on Negotiation and Conflict Resolution. They also visited local businesses in Bansko and the region. The EMUNI University gave ECTS credits to FISI participants who completed three or more courses successfully.

All participants, including the new group of American Fulbright grantees, were offered a wide variety of courses and classes, including Bulgarian language training, yoga and dance, and a guest lecture by James Warlick, Ambassador of the United States to the Republic of Bulgaria. Ken Moskowitz, Counselor for Public Affairs at the U.S. Embassy, conducted a workshop on practical public diplomacy.

All courses were taught by distinguished professors, most of whom were Fulbright grantees and alumni. They represented prestigious universities and institutions from the US, Bulgaria, Pakistan and Ecuador: Harvard University, the University of Michigan, Fordham University, Florida Atlantic University, Florida International University, Colorado Technical University, Universidad del Pac?fico, University of Peshawar, Sofia University, Phelps Dunbar LLP, Foresight Alliance, Communications and Human Resources Development Center, etc.

Along with the rich variety of courses, FISI 2011 offered an exciting cultural program. The highlights of the weekend were a one-day trip to the Rila Monastery with a guided tour of the Monastery museum, and a visit to the Rozhen Monastery and the town of Sandanski. In addition, during the first week, the FISI participants had the unique opportunity to attend jazz concerts and jam-sessions within the International Jazz Festival in Bansko.

The 10th summer institute was yet another memorable continuation of the FISI tradition started in 2002. Once again it fulfilled its many-faceted goals: to promote the Fulbright idea and program; to promote international education and intercultural communication; to improve the quality of education; to introduce the new US Fulbright grantees to the Bulgarian cultural environment; to promote Bulgaria by showing its beautiful nature, rich culture, long history, and promising future.

We would like to acknowledge the valuable contribution of all lecturers for their excellent work and commitment, the active involvement of the Fulbright Commission Board and the US Embassy, and especially the financial support of America for Bulgaria Foundation.


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