Diplomatic career: from dream to reality with Ambassador Biserka Benisheva

🌐 On 27 October/Friday a public discussion on the topic “Diplomatic Career: from Dream to Reality” organized by PanEuropa Bulgaria and SAIMO was held in the Large Conference Hall of the UNWE. Speakers at the event were Ambassador Biserka Benisheva, former Ambassador of Bulgaria to Ireland and Hungary and Director for European Affairs at PanEuropa Bulgaria, and Diana Parapanova, Trainee Attaché at the UN and Global Affairs Directorate at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

🔎Diana Parapanova presented to the audience the steps a young person follows when starting his/her career at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. She pointed out that “in a world that will become more and more globalized, choosing such a profession is the right decision because there will always be a necessity for human contact”. She added that she believes it will be one of the few professions that will remain relevant.

💭 Ambassador Biserka Benisheva talked about her experience as Ambassador to Ireland while Bulgaria was in the process of joining the European Union and about her first steps in the MFA. “Diplomacy is a skill that you cannot read anywhere, but develop gradually,” she said, emphasizing the importance of cultural diplomacy and sharing good practices for defending the Bulgarian national interests are crucial. She urged young people to take up the path of diplomacy saying, “Now there are some global changes that I hope will challenge you as they challenge us.”

🧐 These introductory parts were followed by a discussion with the audience, which raised questions both related to the diplomatic career and those related to Bulgaria’s foreign policy in general. “What education do I need to be a diplomat and ambassador?”, “Does the domestic political crisis and Euroscepticism influence the conduct of Bulgaria’s foreign policy?” and “What advice would you give to your younger version?” were just some of the topics discussed. The speakers discussed the need for a Foreign Policy Strategy for Bulgaria to conduct a coherent foreign policy, shared details about the process of preparing and gathering support for Bulgaria’s candidacy to the UN Human Rights Council and gave career advice.

PanEuropа Bulgaria is delighted to have had the opportunity to meet motivated students actively interested in Bulgaria’s international relations and grateful for the opportunity and the partnership of SAIMO. 🎯