TEVITOL is a special school near Istanbul. It accepts, after multiple screenings and tests, gifted children most of whom do not have the means to continue their education let alone receive an excellent one at TEVITOL. It was started by the late Sezai Turkes in his wife’s memory and now operated by the Turkish Educational Foundation (TEV). Its success is undeniable and the students who go through that system receive an excellent education and continue on to their college and even higher degrees. Many of the graduates are now in the US, studying at prestigious institutions such as MIT, Duke, Yale, and so on, with a full scholarship.
The campus is a very pleasant one right on the Marmara Sea near Gebze, not too far from Istanbul proper. On Wednesday, we went to a special event on the TEVITOL campus. It was the dedication of Mehmet & Nevin Bilginer Dormitory for the female students. Nevin Bilginer is the sister of my brother-in-law Ergun, and Ergun and Binnaz have been instrumental in the fulfillment of the mission of construction of this building which will provide rooms for 40 students.
The day started as heavy overcast with rain predicted. A strong wind kept the rain at bay, but later caused some damage across the country. Clouds, sometimes heavy, provided some comfort from the sun. We spent some time in the lobby of the main administrative building where they served tea and coffee and we got a chance to meet the principle of the school as well as several teachers. One young teacher, Patrick, was from Boston! Small world indeed. After the morning tea, we moved up the short hill to the front of the new dormitory where speeches were delivered, plaques were given, the ribbon was cut. Inside, on the second floor common sitting and study area three students performed very nice music, one played an acoustic guitar and sang a song and the other two performed as a flute duet.
After that was lunch in the school cafeteria overlooking the water. they served soup, mixed grill, salad, and dessert. Very enjoyable morning all around. I am glad I was here in time to participate and take some photographs which I will share with you below. The day continued with a dinner with a different group of family at the dinner table that evening, that will be the subject of the next post.
A few short video clips from the day are below:
Opening speech by Adnan Ignedelikci
Speech delivered by Nevin Bilginer
The guitar and voice performance by a TEVITOL student
Flute duet by two TEVITOL students