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Vladislav Haralampiev from the Faculty of Mathematics and Informatics is Sofia University Student Number One of the Year

Vladislav Haralampiev

The Student Number One of the Year Winners of Sofia University were awarded their prizes at a solemn ceremony at Aula magna of Sofia University.

The Student of the Year Competition has been organized by the Students’ Council for the first time in the 19 year existence of the students’ organization at Sofia University.

The selection board was chaired by Professor Dr Habil Anastas Gerdzhikov; its members were Professor Ivan Ilchev, former Rector of the University (2007-2015), Vyara Ankova, Genaral Manager at Bulgarian National Television, Dr Veselin Milev, Chairperson of the permanent health care and social policy commission at Sofia Municipal Council, Professor Daniel Vulchev, Minister of Education (2005-2009), Milena Damyanova, Chairperson of the parliamentary education and science commission, Elena Marinova, President of “Moussala Soft”, Asen Markov, Deputy Minister of the Youth and Sports, and Yana Vangelova, Chairperson of the National Representation of the Students’ Councils. They reviewed the 81 applications that had been submitted.

The applicants were grouped in the following professional domains: pedagogical sciences, humanities, social sciences, economics, law, natural sciences, mathematics and informatics, health care, sports and volunteer work.

Of the ten winners in the separate categories the board selected the three best students of Sofia University University “St. Kliment Ohridski”.

First Prize: Vladislav Haralampiev

Winner in subject category: Mathematics and Informatics

Vladislav is a first-year M Sc student in Artificial Intelligence at the Faculty of Mathematics and Informatics at Sofia University. For the academic year of 2014/2015 he was an all-rounder. He had obtained his B Sc degree in computer studies at the Faculty of Mathematics and Informatics at the University cum laude. He is an alumnus of the Sofia High School of Mathematics which he finished with distinction.

Vladislav’s main interests are in the areas of competitive programming, technology self-education and the processing of natural language and images. This year he has been shortlisted for the Challenge 24 and VK Cup Final.

Vladislav was a winner of a Certificate of Merit of the Rector of Sofia University for scientific achievements in 2013/ 2015. In 2014 he was awarded the Student of the Year Prize by the Ministry of Education and Science. In 2014 he won the first prize for achievements in the domain of informatics and the computer sciences on the occasion of the 125th anniversary of the foundation of the Faculty of Mathematics and an encouraging prize by the FMI-Society Foundation in memory of Professor Ivan Soskov for research achievements in the domain of the computer sciences. He won a scholarship of the Eureka Foundation in 2011/ 2012, and a golden medal from the international Olympics in mathematics in 2015. In 2013/ 2014 he was awarded the personal Eureka John Atanasoff Scholarship in computer sciences.


Vladislav’s scientific interests are in the domain of competitive programming. In this line he focuses on digital algorithms, graph algorithms, efficient data structures, the theory of games, the optimization of functions, etc.

He took part in many projects, including “GPS Measurements in the Conditions of Solar Maximum“ within the framework of the 21st Bulgarian Antarctic expedition in 2012-2013, a project for the creation of Petri nets for the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences; a project for 3D models with educational aims for the facilitation of the teaching of computer graphics at the Faculty of Mathematics and Informatics; a project for the analysis and monitoring of the supercomputer at the executive agency for e-telecommunication networks and information systems, and also participated in scientific conferences.

Vladislav has four publications.

Vladislav was on internship at Dropbox and Google. His projects are related to the Dropbox installer and the system for automatic disturbance detection linked with the content sites partnering with Google.

During this summer he is again on internship at Google and will work on a project of measuring the effectiveness of advertisements on YouTube.

Second Prize: Diana Cholakova

Winner in subject category: Natural Sciences

Diana is a fourth-year B Sc student in Engineering Chemistry and Modern Materials at the Faculty of Chemistry and Pharmacy at Sofia University.

At the beginning of her third year she started extracurricular scientific work at the Department of Engineering Chemistry and Pharmaceutical Engineering at the Faculty and ever since she has actively participated in a research project run jointly by a team working on active materials at the University of Cambridge. The objective of the research is to describe the specific transitions observed in the emulsion systems (drops of organic liquid in hydro environment) during the process of the freezing of the drops. The experiments revealed a new and unknown so far phenomenon: the drops of carbohydrogens change their shape spontaneously when cooled and while they are still in a liquid state. The first results of the research were published in an article in Nature, December, 2015. Thus far, five citations of the article have been made. Another article has been accepted for publication by the Advances in Colloid and Interface Science Journal, yet another has been sent to the Langmuir Journal. Two more articles have been prepared for publication.


Some of the results of the conducted experiments describe another unforeseen phenomenon, the process of spontaneous self-emulgation whereby micron and submicron sized droplets are obtained. Diana described the observed phenomenon in the BBC Knowledge Journal.

During the current year she participated in a preparatory school and a conference in Eindhoven. Having won a project for a short sabbatical within the scientific European COST MP1106 framework, in April she visited Cambridge University where she conducted experiments in various laboratories; there she had the opportunity to familiarize with new experimental techniques and obtain important results that will contribute to the understanding of details of the mechanism of the phenomena that would be elaborated in a forthcoming article. At Cambridge University she participated in a conference where she presented her results in a poster format. Diana was awarded the best poster prize by the conference jury.

Diana completed her secondary education at the National High School of Mathematical and Natural Sciences, Department of Informatics. Her knowledge of mathematics was given high appraisal by her tutors at Sofia University and they invited her to conduct seminar classes in mathematical calculus when she was in her second year. Since then she has held classes with three different years, five groups of first and second year students.

Third Prize: Anna-Maria Atanasova

Winner in subject category: Law.

Anna-Maria is a third-year law student at the Faculty of Law at Sofia University.

In April, 2016 she won the Best Orator Prize and won in the international Europa Moot Court Competition the top prize – internship at the EU Court in Luxemburg. The Faculty of Law’s team won third place in the competition in which representatives from eight European universities took part.

Anna-Maria was an intern and a legal assistant at prestigious law offices. She is a Sofia French Language School alumna.