Conference of Young Entrepreneurs Presented the Successes of Entrepreneurship Programmes’ Graduates at UNWE

Monday, 26 October 2020 15:10

More than 30 graduates of the ten classes of Entrepreneurship specialty, who created and developed their own businesses, took part in the conference entitled „100 Years of UNWE - a School for Entrepreneurs of the New Century“, organized by the Institute of Entrepreneurship of UNWE on October 23, 2020.

Restrictions in connection to Covid-19 did not allow a number of other successful business graduates to join the forum, as well as to invite a wider range of participants - colleagues and students of UNWE.

The event, which lasted all day, was honoured by the Rector Prof. Dr. Dimitar Dimitrov, Dr. Boyko Takov, Executive Director of the Executive Agency for Promotion of Small and Medium Enterprises, Mr. Vladimir Danailov, Executive Director and Member of the Management Board of Fund Manager of Financial Instruments in Bulgaria EAD (Fund of Funds), Ms. Nina Tsaneva, Advisor to the Minister of Economy, Mr. Vasil Karaivanov, Chairman of the Management Board of Sofia Tech Park, Mr. Zheng Zhong, entrepreneur and Director of Terraland Group , Ms. Irina Beleva, Senior Adviser of the Bulgarian-Chinese Association for Business Development and Former Consul General of Bulgaria in Shanghai, Ms. Maya Gesheva, Director of the National School of Finance and Economics (NSFE), and Mr. Angel Stoykov, Chairman of the Student Council of UNWE.

“I am glad that despite the difficult situation we are here together to celebrate both the 100thAanniversary of UNWE and the contribution of the specialty in creating entrepreneurs, so necessary to meet the challenges of the new century.” With these words, Assoc. Prof. Kostadin Kolarov, PhD, Director of the Institute of Entrepreneurship, opened the conference.

In the Large Conference Hall

Before the greetings of the official guests with a minute of silence the conference participants honoured the memory of  Prof. Kiril Todorov, D.Sc., founder of the Center for Entrepreneurship Development (1997), Department of Entrepreneurship (2006), Entrepreneurship specialty (2007), and Director of the Institute of Entrepreneurship until his death. 

The Rector Prof. Dimitrov welcomed the participants and pointed out that despite the complicated situation by Covid-19, the tradition of using modern information technologies and involving students and doctoral students in the activities of the university continues at UNWE. “The presence of so many interested people today is an evidence that the Institute of Entrepreneurship is on the right track and has huge potential for development. You know that UNWE celebrates its 100th Anniversary in a special atmosphere, but this has made us more enterprising and use what we have not used so actively so far,” said the Rector and wished success to the conference and to young entrepreneurs.

The Rector Prof. Dr. Dimitar Dimitrov

The event was attended by current students of the specialty, as well as students from the NSFE and Tsar Simeon the Great Private Higher School – partners of the Institute of Entrepreneurship.

Special thanks were extended to the conference sponsor Geotechmin Ltd.

“It should be emphasized that the admission of the first class of entrepreneurship students in 2007 was preceded by over 15 years of systematic accumulation of knowledge through research on Bulgarian practice and transfer of achievements of colleagues from other countries. With the introduction of a bachelor's program in entrepreneurship, UNWE has overtaken not only universities in Eastern Europe, but also a number of Western European universities.”

At the end of his speech, Assoc. Prof. Kolarov stated with confidence “that the time will not be far away when the wall with the names of our graduates, entrepreneurs of the new century, will surpass the one with the names of Bulgarian statesmen associated with UNWE”.

Two of the Institute's many long-term foreign partners, Prof. Ken O'Neill, Professor Emeritus of Entrepreneurship at Ulster University, the first person awarded The Queen’s Award for Enterprise Promotion – Lifetime Achievement Award (2005), and Doctor Honoris Causa of the UNWE, and Dr. Mark Potts, Director of the Program for Personal Financial Planning at the Central University of Michigan, USA. They congratulated the university on its 100th anniversary and wished success to Bulgarian entrepreneurship and business.

Prof. Ken O’Neill

Dr. Mark Potts

Dr. Boyko Takov

Mrs. Nina Tsaneva

Mr. Vasil Karaivanov   

Mr. Zheng Zhong

Mrs. Irina Beleva

Mrs. Maya Gesheva

In a special session, Mr. Vladimir Danailov presented the activities of the Fund of Funds and specific programmes to support entrepreneurs. Questions from the audience followed, to which Mr. Vladimirov answered and called on young entrepreneurs to be active in communication and seeking assistance from the Fund's experts.

Mr. Vladimir Danailov

The work program of the conference included three sessions with a presentation of the businesses of the graduates of the Entrepreneurship specialty, with emphasis on the path travelled, the achievements, lessons learned, new ideas and inspiration. Enterprises from almost all spheres of the economy were presented - high technologies, knowledge-based services and traditional industries. The former students shared how they applied the knowledge gained and the skills acquired during the training in the specialty in their business practice.

The conference was a meeting of young entrepreneurs from different classes of the specialty, who discovered mutual interests for business cooperation.

And although the time for presentations provided in the programme turned out to be insufficient, the conference ended with advice expressed by the guest Mr. Zheng Zhong, useful summaries made by Assoc. Prof. Kolarov, increased enthusiasm and clearly stated desire of young entrepreneurs for future similar initiatives.

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