The University of Mining and Geology “St. Ivan Rilski” has been an independent educational institution since 1953. In the course of sixty years of existence, it has established itself as an academic and research centre that provides training in the spheres of geology, in mining, and electrical and mechanical engineering. It is an institution where fundamental and applied scientific research is carried out, and the whole range of post-graduate qualification courses offered. The proper combination of general engineering education together with the acquisition of profiled knowledge and abilities provides immense opportunities for the graduates of the University to find their professional realisation in this country and abroad. Since it was founded, more than 21 000 engineers, amongst whom citizens of around 40 countries from Europe, Asia, Africa and South America, have been trained and have found occupational employment in the areas of geology and mining, in power engineering, in civil engineering and industrial construction, in environmental protection, and other branches.
The University of Mining and Geology “St. Ivan Rilski” has educates students in all educational degrees. In terms of duration and scope, The College of Mining in the town of Kurdzhali is a basic structural unit within the University of Mining and Geology “St. Ivan Rilski” and trains students in the educational and qualification degree of “specialist”, granted after 3 years of studies.
The Bachelor’s degree is the first educational and qualification degree at the University which is acquired after a 4- to 4,5- year course of studies. It is an educational degree granted for the 12 basic degree courses taught at the University. Having successfully passed a set of examinations and presented well-prepared course projects, and after defending a Diploma Thesis at the end of the course of studies, the graduates are granted the degree of “bachelors” and obtain the state educational document. Students acquiring the “bachelor’s degree” are highly qualified personnel operating in the sphere of industry.
The Master’s degree is the second educational and qualification degree, which is given after a 1,5-year course of post-graduate studies following the acquisition of the “bachelor’s degree”. Having successfully passed a set of examinations, as well as presented and defended well-prepared course projects, and after defending a Diploma Thesis at the end of the course of studies, the graduates are granted the degree of “masters” and obtain the state educational document.
The Doctor of Science is the third educational and scientific degree. Education is performed by observing individual curricula, and a “doctor’s degree” is awarded to post-graduates, which corresponds to the American and European Ph.D.degree.
In the field of education and research, the University of Mining and Geology maintains extensive international contacts with universities and scientific institutions in Germany, Austria, Russia, Spain, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Greece, Hungary, Serbia, FAROM, the UK, the USA, France, Turkey, Greece, and many others.
The University of Mining and Geology has formal agreements for partnerships, educational cooperative programs, and exchanges worldwide through the European Scientific Foundation, TEMPUS, CEEPUS, SOCRATES, COPERNICUS, and others.
Doctors Honoris Causa
The holders of the honorary degree of Doctor Honoris Causa of the University of Mining and Geology are as follows:
Prof. Dr.Alexandru Florea – then Deputy Rector of Research at the Mining Academy in the town of Petrosani, Romania;
Prof. Eng. Danail Danailov – former Rector of the University of Mining and Geology “St. Ivan Rilski";
Prof. Emil Constantinescu – Dr of Geology, President of the Republic of Romania ;
Nikolae Iliash – Rector of the Mining Academy in Petrosani, Romania;
Prof. Lev Puchkov – Rector of the Moscow State University of Mining, Russia;
Acad. Ivan Kostov – mineralogist, Bulgaria;
Mr Ilia Delev – collector and grantor of crystals, Brazil;
Prof. Dr. Konstantin Sheiretov – former Rector of the University of Mining and Geology “St. Ivan Rilski";
Prof. Valter Leerman of the Catholic University in Leuven, Belgium;
Prof. Dr. Nikolae Dima – then Deputy Rector of Education, currently Rector of the Mining Academy in Petrosani, Romania;
Prof. Dr. Geol.Sc. Toma Dobrev - former Rector of the University of Mining and Geology “St. Ivan Rilski";
Prof. Dr. Kurt Hege - Wattenfall Europe Mining & Generation AG, Germany;
Prof. Dr. Slobodan Vuich – Belgrade University, Serbia;
Tsvetan Vassilev – Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Corporate Commercial Bank.
The patron saint of the University of Mining and Geology is “St. Ivan Rilski”. Born between 876 and 880 in the village of Skrino, to the west of Sofia, he was the founder of the Rila Monastery (930-932). He died on the 18th August 946 and was canonised in 980. Having been transferred several times, nowadays his relics are kept in the Rila Monastery.
The age of the St Ivan Rilski was crucial for the Bulgarian country. That was the period when the Bulgarian people were converted to Christianity. The process began under the reign of Tsar Boris I, continued under Tsar Simeon’s rule, and declined under Tsar Petur when the Bulgarian state weakened. St. Ivan Rilski’s powerful spirited personality and ideas turned popular far beyond the borders of his humble retreat. Shortly before his death, he wrote his remarkable Testament with religious messages to his followers. St. Ivan Rilski is among the prominent figures of medieval Bulgarian, and ranks high among the most venerable Bulgarian saints. He is also the traditional patron saint of the Bulgarian miners.
During the centuries, the monastery that St. Ivan Rilski founded in the Rila Mountain expanded, becoming a genuine stronghold of a truly national spirit, as well as the largest and most significant religious and cultural centre in Bulgaria during the years of the Ottoman yoke.
Currently, the unique atmosphere, history and beauty have turned the Rila Monastery into a favoured tourist destination and a place of relaxation.