Educators from American Minorities Visit Turkey
January 14, 2009, Washington, DC - The Turkish Coalition of America (TCA), in cooperation with the United Negro College Fund Special Programs, National Congress of American Indians and the American Indian Higher Education Consortium, has organized a visit to Turkey for a delegation of faculty from Minority Serving Institutions (MSI), including Historically Black Colleges and Universities and Tribal Colleges and Universities. The visiting delegation arrived in Turkey on January 7 and will remain in Turkey through January 17.
The colleges and universities represented include Bennett College for Women, Cheyney University of Pennsylvania, Clark Atlanta University, Florida Memorial University, Howard University, Lincoln University, Menominee Nation, Morehouse College, North Carolina A&T University, Northern Arizona University, South Dakota State University, Spelman College, Virginia State University, Winston-Salem State University and Xavier University of New Orleans.
The purpose of the visit is to build bridges between MSIs and Turkish universities and among other things, promote Turkey as a Study Abroad destination for African American, Hispanic American and Native American students; lay the ground work for faculty and student exchanges between Turkish universities and MSIs; and promote the establishment of African American and Native American studies departments at Turkish universities. TCA spearheaded this effort in early 2008 by establishing a scholarship program with funding for 100 scholarships to aid American minority students to study in Turkey.
During their visit, the delegation was introduced to a significant historical site which links ancient Turkey to the origins of American Democracy. In Patara, on Turkey’s Mediterranean Coast lie the ruins of the ancient parliamentarian building of the Lycian League, known as the Bouleuterion, which was 1800 years ago the meeting place of the first federal republic in recorded history. Not only did James Madison make reference to the Lycian League’s republican governing system at the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia in 1787, but the semi-circular configuration of seats in the U.S. House of Representatives is identical to the seating arrangement in the Bourleuterion of Patara.
In addition to meetings with Turkish universities, the delegation is also visiting Georgetown University’s McGhee Center for Eastern Mediterranean Studies in Alanya, Turkey.
Study Abroad Scholarships for African, Hispanic, and Native American Students
April 23, 2008, Washington, DC - In response to interest voiced in the Study Abroad in Turkey program by other American minority students, the Turkish Coalition of America announced today the expansion of the African American Scholarship Program to 100 scholarships per year at 2,000 USD per student. In addition to African American students, Hispanic Americans and Native Americans are also now eligible for this scholarship to study in Turkey . Students who are interested in doing a study abroad program in Turkey should go to www.DiversityAbroad.com, to learn how to apply for the TCA scholarship.
About Diversity Abroad: Diversity Abroad was founded to address low participation among minority and low-income students in study abroad. Through the website, DiversityAbroad.com, on-campus outreach, and working with education professionals, Diversity Abroad strives to ensure that all students are aware and have access to study abroad opportunities. For more information visit www.DiversityAbroad.com
What Members of Congress Say About Study Abroad in Turkey Scholarship
Hon. Tom Cole: Republican-Oklahoma/4th District, the sole tribal enrolled Native American member of the US House of Representatives: "The Turkish Coalition of America is taking the lead in building understanding between the cultures of minority students in the US and their counterparts abroad. I am proud of the strong commitment of this organization to bridge the gap between Native American, African American and Latino students and the nation of Turkey.”
Hon. Virginia Foxx: Republican-North Carolina/5th District, whose district has a Historically Black College and University institution, Winston-Salem State University: “I have enjoyed working with TCA in promoting U.S.-Turkish relations, and I am excited that TCA is providing the opportunity for more African American college students to study in Turkey. Students are going to love the beauty, history of Turkey and her people and will find an inspiring environment in pursuing their studies.”
Hon. Alcee Hastings: Democrat-Florida/23rd District, Chairman of the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe (Helsinki Commission): “I laud TCA for reaching out to the African American community in establishing this scholarship program. I have always been very fond of Turkey and her people and have continued to support Turkish initiatives in Congress through my tenure. I look forward to working with TCA on such an important scholarship program.”
Hon. Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatric: Democrat-Michigan/13th District, a former chair of the Congressional Black Caucus: “I commend the Turkish Coalition of America for its efforts to build bridges between the United States and Turkey. I support this initiative, which provides African American students with the opportunity to expand their knowledge about our important ally and to experience life in a critical part of the world.”
Hon. Solomon Ortiz: Democrat-Texas/27th District, a member of both the Congressional Hispanic and Turkish Caucuses: "There is a finite amount of knowledge that can be obtained from reading a text book and attending a lecture. Only through unique study abroad programs, like those sponsored by the Turkish Coalition of America, will we be able to educate our Latino and minority students about the vast cultures of the world and prepare them to be part of the global community.”
TCA Offers Opportunities for Minority Students
2008, Washington, DC – TCA announces the Expansion of Study in Turkey Scholarships for Minority Students. Program now includes Hispanic and Native American students in addition to African American students.
“The need to build bridges between cultures cannot be overstated,” said G. Lincoln McCurdy, President of the Turkish Coalition of America. "TCA is delighted to offer these scholarships, and we hope that this exposure to Turkish culture will broaden the students’ horizons and will foster friendship, understanding and cooperation between the United States and Turkey."
“Global citizens cannot be made only in a classroom or through a computer screen. TCA's generous scholarship will help American minority students, who are significantly underrepresented in study abroad programs, to gain an appreciation for another culture by first-hand experience,” said Andrew Gordon, founder of Diversity Abroad. “Turkey is a diverse country that connects two continents and that has played a pivotal role, both in the past and present, in shaping our modern world."
Students who are interested in doing a study abroad program in Turkey should go to www.DiversityAbroad.com , to learn on how to apply for the TCA scholarship.