Respected Bulgarian Sociologist Quits over Stoichkov's Academic TitleDomestic | November 13, 2011, Sunday // 11:19| views
Sociologist, Tsvetozar Tomov (pictured), is outraged the Plovdiv University has bestowed the Doctor Honoris Causa title to the most famous Bulgarian football player. Photo by Sofia Photo Agency
Bestowing the title Doctor Honoris Causa to legendary striker Hristo Stoichkov, stirred a scandal in Bulgaria, after a respected sociologist announced he is so outraged he is quitting the University in question.
On Friday, Stoichkov, who in mid-October was also appointed Bulgarian consul in Barcelona, was made Doctor Honoris Causa of the "Paisiy Hilendarski" University in the second largest city of Plovdiv.
In an open letter sent Sunday, sociologist, Tsvetozar Tomov, declares he is leaving the University over the shame and embarrassment inflicted by awarding the title to the football player.
"I learned from the media that Plovdiv University has bestowed the title. I would not comment on the issue of contributions to science and education of the newly-hatched Doctor. I am aware that bestowing this highest academic title to people who have proven mostly they have the skill to kick ball, became a tradition for this University – this title was given already to Bulgarian football player, Hristo Bonev, Italian football star, Carlo Ancelotti, and others. But the case "Stoichkov" is the epitome of this shameful tradition, if one takes into account the fact this is a man striking as uneducated and illiterate," Tomov writes to the President of the Plovdiv University, Zapryan Kozludzhov.
In the letter, the sociologist, who worked at the Critical and Applied Sociology Department, demands immediate termination of his labor contract with the University, saying he did not want to be part of the humiliation, and vowing to make his letter as public as possible.
Stoichkov was born in 1966 in Plovdiv. He is regarded as one of the best footballers of his generation and the greatest Bulgarian footballer of all time. Nicknamed The Dagger, he was a member of the Bulgaria national team that finished fourth at the 1994 World Cup. Apart from his footballing talent, he is notable for his on-pitch temper. He was honored as European Footballer of the Year in 1994 and was named by Pel? as one of the 125 Greatest Living Footballers at a FIFA Awards Ceremony in 2004.
The former coach of the Bulgarian national team is known to be a close friend and staunch supporter of Prime Minister, Boyko Borisov.
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