Category Archives: Faculty Portraits

  1. When Sanders Hall Was Art Central: Arts Fest’s Premiere in 1995

    July 4, 2017 by American College of Sofia

    The idea was to promote the College – to spread the word that it was being active in the city, to have its name heard more and more, and have it connected to the cultural life of Sofia. “It was an incredible idea, very much revolutionary,” Nia says. “And so I got on with it.”

  2. John Kelly: Bulgaria as Serendipity

    December 21, 2016 by American College of Sofia

    While I was teaching at ACS I used my Trabant to explore all over the place, and even drove it out to the Black Sea a couple of times.
    I haven’t been back in Bulgaria since 1999, so it’s been seeing 17 years of change all at once. The campus is the same, people are the same, but the world around us has changed…
    The other day I walked about 25 kilometers all over Sofia, I just couldn’t stop. It has been fun taking the metro around, too. I can still remember how to get around, and I have been to Slaveykov Square, Vitosha Boulevard, different museums (that I rarely visited when I lived here), and the Zhenski Pazar.

  3. Garth Greenwell: “Every Human Life Is Infinitely Valuable”

    December 21, 2016 by American College of Sofia

    Almost everything that I did and that was valuable about my experience in Bulgaria was tied up with the language and with being able to speak it, with being able to turn on the television and watch something, being able to listen to the radio, being able to read Bulgarian literature, which is not to a very great extent available in English, being able to read the stories of Yovkov. And also in terms of teaching at the American College, like when we read Shakespeare’s sonnets, to be able to bring in Valeri Petrov’s translation of a sonnet and to look at them side by side, or when we read Huckleberry Finn to bring in the first few pages of Yan Bibiyan which I think are very sort of Huck-Finn-ish. Especially teaching something like literature, you want your students to be engaging with the text with their whole lives, with their whole beings, and that means making connections between, you know, a book they read as a kid like Yan Bibyan and a book like Huck Finn and see the use the great poet Valeri Petrov made of Shakespeare. And this just allows for a much richer conversation.

  4. Dr. Roger Whitaker: Looking Back, Planning Ahead

    September 28, 2016 by American College of Sofia

    The new building will reflect what we know about “next generation high schools” with respect to student-centered design, flexible learning places, appropriate technology, and learning opportunities anywhere, any time.

  5. Gorden Crumbie: “I Really Never Left”

    August 2, 2016 by American College of Sofia

    I remember vividly the first day – meeting incredible colleagues and the best students a teacher could hope for, then the last day, in the auditorium, crying on stage to a standing ovation from students and colleagues, and everyday I can possibly remember in between.

  6. Colin Boyd Shafer: Issues Bigger Than the Classroom

    July 5, 2016 by American College of Sofia

    I hope that the message that I teach them is that they can have an impact on some of these crucial topics… not just learn about them and do nothing. I hope that they get that from me, whether from the class or from the content, that I show them through my own life that they can make a stand. If you are in a position of any sort of privilege, that is the perfect opportunity to look around yourself and say, “Where can I make a difference and help?” Not being a savior, not going and rescuing the other, but instead just trying to recognize that you are lucky and you could be in another person’s shoes in the future. Hopefully, by learning about the world and Geography, you are not just learning about things out there, but you are realizing that you are connected to them. And that you could be a part of whatever story you want to.

  7. Andrew Robarts: A Trip Down Memory Lane

    March 15, 2016 by American College of Sofia

    I could go on with this trip down memory lane… from organizing the ACS First Trivia Bowl, to practicing with the Bulgarian national baseball team, to spending several nights on Cherni Vrah with the volunteer ski-patrol team (we ate a lot of nadenitsa), to picking up and taking students to school in the blue van in the depths of a Sofia winter, to playing baseball on the lawn in front of Sanders as our friends across the street conducted crowd control drills, to climbing Mt. Musala with a group students (in the pre-Green school days), to watching at a friend’s apartment in Mladost 4 Bulgaria beat France 2-1 in the Parc des Princes to go to the 1994 World Cup in the US, to arguing with a sky lift operator in Pamporovo (in the best Bulgarian I ever spoke) that my lichna carta entitled me to pay the local (not the foreign) rate for a lift ticket, to getting to know many wonderful Bulgarian colleagues (several of whom still teach and work at the school including Stefka Papazova, Maria Angelova, Vanya Angelova, and Ani Ivanova.)

  8. Patty Anderson: Reminiscing about ACS

    March 11, 2016 by American College of Sofia

    Scruffy spends lots of time on the couch and probably doesn’t remember her time on the streets of Mladost 2, but she can still be goaded into action if you yell “Haide!”with just the right intonation. Our biggest news is small in stature. Mabel, our daughter, will be six months old when this goes to print.

  9. Kalinde Webb and Bill Fisher: Bulgaria on Our Mind

    March 7, 2016 by American College of Sofia

    Working at the College so early in our lives together did much to define how we see things. The two of us being the entire English Department in 1993-94 was a bit odd, but it allowed us to get to know the students better than we could later in our time at ACS as we discussed classes and students often; we would find ourselves wondering about a student and whether any cultural differences between America and Bulgaria might account for certain behavior or responses in their essays, or if that student was just expressing him or herself as an individual. We did have a number of disagreements, but Kalinde was chair, so….

  10. Iain McClinton: The Art of Learning

    March 1, 2016 by American College of Sofia

    The truth is that most of our school day memories very quickly fade, or rather concentrate themselves into a simple essence. I don’t remember much of most of my classes but I remember where I sat in particular classrooms. I have forgotten almost everything about chemistry but remember a particular moment when the teacher caught my imagination when describing the structure of atoms.