Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Official Public Defence
of a thesis for obtaining the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degree
On 30 May 2018, at the age of 30, I was officially admitted to the degree of
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Sofia, Bulgaria
University: National Sports Academy, Sofia, Bulgaria
Department: Physiology and Biochemistry
Accredited PhD programme: 'Physical Education in the Educational System'
Code of professional field: 1.3. Physical Education Pedagogy
ASSESSMENT OF THE NUTRITION AND PHYSICAL FITNESS IN PRE-SCHOOL & PRIMARY SCHOOL CHILDREN PRACTISING ARTISTIC GYMNASTICS
Assoc. Prof. Dr Velizar Mihailov PhD
Prof. Dr Maria Toteva DSc
Chair: Assoc. Prof. Dr Velizar Mihailov, PhD
Prof. Dr Maria Toteva DSc (Professor in Sports Medicine)
Prof. David Davidov DSc (Bulgarian Association of Sport for All)
Prof. Dr Rossica Zamfirova-Mitova PhD (Bulgarian Academy of Sciences)
Assoc. Prof. Dr Velizar Mihailov PhD (Head of the Department of Physiology & Biochemistry at the National Sports Academy)
Assoc. Prof. Iliq Kiuchukov PhD (Department of Gymnastics at the National Sports Academy)
Photo Gallery: Official Public Defence (30 May 2018)
Here is the audience of the biggest and most important event in my life to date. It is the 30th of May 2018. The location is the National Sports Academy in Bulgaria, and we are about to commence the official public defence of the thesis which I submitted for obtaining the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degree.
Dr Mihailov (who is the Head of the Department of Physiology & Biochemistry) is commencing the procedure for my official public defence for admission to the degree of Doctor of Philosophy.
Assoc. Prof. Albena Alexandrova PhD (my Doctoral Supervisor) is presenting me to the Scientific Jury.
Official Public PhD Defence. Moment of a Lifetime, 30 May 2018.
I am presenting my Doctoral Thesis in front of the Scientific Jury.
All eyes on me. It is time to demonstrate the quality of our research and the effort behind this study which was supervised by 2 of the best researchers in the University (Dr Alexandrova and Dr Petrov).
Presenting the methodology of the study and the anthropometric parameters which were measured and evaluated.
I was registered as a distance-learning PhD student at the Department of Physiology and Biochemistry at the National Sports Academy in Bulgaria from 2015 to 2018.
Obtaining the PhD degree was one of my lifetime goals.
The Scientific Jury included the following experts: Prof. Dr Maria Toteva DSc, Prof. David Davidov DSc, Prof. Dr Rossica Zamfirova-Mitova PhD, Assoc. Prof. Dr Velizar Mihailov PhD and Assoc. Prof. Iliq Kiuchukov PhD.
But you might ask what a PhD is. Well, let's think about it. PhD is short for Doctor of Philosophy, and it is the highest level of degree which can be achieved. In fact, it is a globally recognized degree awarded by universities and higher education institutions to a candidate who has submitted a doctoral thesis, based on extensive and original research in their chosen field.
But why did I want to do a PhD? Well, let me tell you. Apart from the obvious passion for scientific research and curiosity I possess, I wish to achieve and maintain the highest standards of teaching and safe practice in all aspects of Physical Education and Sports Coaching. Therefore, pursuing the highest academic qualification, which is the PhD Degree, is of the greatest importance for my professional career and the realisation of my long-term goals and objectives.
I have just completed my presentation. I feel well, I am happy, and I think that it went well but this is just the beginning. Next up, the Chair of the Scientific Jury, Assoc. Prof. Dr Velizar Mihailov PhD, is inviting the first reviewer of my PhD thesis.
First, Prof. Dr Maria Toteva DSc (Professor in Sports Medicine) presents her review on my PhD thesis at the Official Public Defence, 2018.
An audience of 50 people is listening to the first review on my PhD thesis provided by Prof. Dr Maria Toteva DSc. She concludes: 'This PhD thesis demonstrates the innovative competencies of Stefan Kolimechkov, and it assured me with the greatest confidence to suggest to the honorary Scientific Committee to admit him to the degree of Doctor of Philosophy'.
Next up, Assoc. Prof. Dr Velizar Mihailov PhD providing his review on my doctoral thesis at the National Sports Academy. He concludes: 'I suggest to the Committee, on the basis of this PhD thesis, to admit Stefan Todorov Kolimechkov to the degree of Doctor of Philosophy'.
The third reviewer, Prof. Dr Rossica Zamfirova-Mitova PhD from the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences concludes: 'The research is on a topic, which is currently of great interest, and has been conducted by using appropriate methods'.
The fourth reviewer, Prof. David Davidov DSc from the Bulgarian Association of Sport for All concludes: 'This PhD thesis contains scientific results which make a significant contribution, both in terms of theory and of practice'.
The fifth reviewer, Assoc. Prof. Iliq Kiuchukov PhD from the Department of Gymnastics at the National Sports Academy concludes: 'This PhD thesis displays high-quality scientific research, which indisputably makes a contribution of substantial import. The thesis has been prepared to the highest professional standards, and presents scientific data which is of great public interest and significance'.
My second supervisor, Assoc. Prof. Dr Lubomir Petrov PhD from the Department of Physiology and Biochemistry shares his positive opinion on my dedication, passion and work on that PhD thesis over the last 3 years.
Comments and Questions at my Official PhD Public Defence at the National Sports Academy in Sofia, 2018.
Professor Julia Mutafova expreses her positive view on my performance as a student, as well as my PhD research.
At exactly this moment I realise how successful my PhD defence is going. The Chair of the Scientific Jury, Dr Mihailov, confirms that all reviewers voted YES, and congratulates me on becoming a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD). Moment of a Lifetime, National Sports Academy, Sofia, 2018.
And back to me for the last words, and here I say the following: 'I would like to thank all of the members of the Scientific Committee for their reviews, which contributed to the final format of this doctoral thesis. I would like to sincerely thank my doctoral supervisors Assoc. Prof. Albena Alexandrova and Assoc. Prof. Lubomir Petrov'.
Associate Professor Stanislav Mavrudiev congratulates me after the Official PhD Defence, Sofia 2018. Prof. Mavrudiev was an amazing lecturer, and I still remember one of his first lectures quite a few years ago, when he told us (the students) that 'you never get a second chance to make a good first impression'. Having him witnessing my PhD defence was an honor.
My Dad congratulates me after the Official Public Defence. Thnak you Dad!
And then my Mum congratulates me after the Official Public Defence. Thnak you Mum!
And here I am with three of the 5 official reviewers of my PhD thesis. From left to right: Professor Toteva, Professor Davidov, me, and Professor Zamfirova. This is the biggest and most important achievement in my life, and I know that this event will also be one of the most significant one in my life. Thank you all!
It was a huge honor to present my Doctoral thesis in front of this audience, including the Scientific Jury for this Official PhD Defence, lecturers and researchers from 3 Departments of the National Sports Academy (Biochemistry and Physiology, Gymnastics, and Physical Education), as well as parents of the gymnasts I coached and their children.