Approximately 40 Bulgarian alumni of the George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies gathered in Sofia on the evening of Wednesday, April 19, as part of an Outreach Networking Event conducted by the Marshall Center in partnership with George C. Marshall Alumni Club – Bulgaria. The group heard presentations from Dr. George Sharkov, National Cybersecurity Coordinator of Bulgaria, and Professor Todor Tagarev of the Bulgarian Institute of Information and Communication Technologies on the topics on the cyber dimension of hybrid warfare and efforts to increase resiliency against threats emanating from this domain in Bulgaria. Dr. Sharkov is one of the newest members of the Bulgarian alumni community, having attended the Program on Cybersecurity Studies 17-04. Major Rob Hancock, Bilateral Affairs Officer with the Office of Defense Cooperation at the U.S. Embassy in Sofia, also spoke about the close security cooperation between the two countries.
Mr. Drew Beck, Alumni Relations Specialist responsible for Bulgaria, also spoke to the group about the importance and scope of the Marshall Center alumni network, as well as the many opportunities available to the Bulgarian alumni. These opportunities include fully-funded research fellowships at the Center, access to a wide variety of research tools through the Marshall Center Library, the possibility of participating in Marshall Center communities of interest and resident programs as subject-matter experts, and opportunities to publish research in the Center’s per Concordiam magazine.
Bulgaria has participated in Marshall Center programs since the founding of the center in 1993 and has sent over 400 security sector professionals to participate, making it the 4th largest alumni community of the center. The Marshall Center regularly organizes visits such as this one in order to keep its alumni network up to date on the work of the center and to bring together national alumni communities.