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8th International Students’ Graduation Ceremony Organized

International students who have received their education in our country, coming from all sides of the world with the program “Türkiye Scholarships” of the Presidency for Turks Abroad and Related Communities (YTB) graduated. The President of the Republic Recep Tayyip Erdoğan who spoke in the program said “In this hall, I see the future ministers, prime ministers, politicians, artists, and God Willing, the scientist who will receive Nobel awards. Godspeed and may Allah grant you fortune.”

International students who have come from all sides of the world with the “Türkiye Scholarships” granted by the Presidency for Turks Abroad and Related Communities (YTB), receiving education at undergraduate, graduate and PhD levels have graduated. The 8th of the traditional “International Graduation Ceremony” organized by YTB was realized with the attendance of the President of the Republic Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. These international students will return their home countries after their graduation to contribute to the development of their societies and form a bridge between countries.
The President of the Republic Recep Tayyip Erdoğan addressed the international students in the program and started his speech with these words: “I salute this beautiful portrait of friendship, our youth from all around the world from this hall that resembles the halls of United Nations.” Erdoğan wished success to all international students who are currently receiving education in universities with Türkiye Scholarships.
Erdoğan, greeting all the graduates who will serve their people in 165 different countries after receiving education in Turkey, wished again for the graduates present in the hall with their families to turn this experience in Turkey to happiness. The President of the Republic said, “In this hall, I see the future ministers, prime ministers, politicians, artists, and God Willing, the scientist who will receive Nobel awards. In this hall, I see the soldiers of the heart who, with their good work, shall serve both their home countries and the whole humanity. Godspeed and may Allah grant you fortune.”
Erdoğan expressed his view that he sees each of the international students and graduates as a member of the great family of Turkey and at the same time, natural representatives of their home countries, and said that “The heart of our nation and the doors of our state are always open to both our graduates and students who are receiving education in our country with Türkiye Scholarships and through their own means. We shall never forget you and I believe you shall always keep us in your hearts.”
Stating that the number of graduates who received education in our country with Türkiye Scholarships from the start of the program till today is almost 150 thousand, Erdoğan said that hereby he reminisced with gratitude the 8th President of the Republic Turgut Özal who laid the foundations of the international student project a quarter century ago. Erdoğan also expressed his gratitude to everyone who worked in this beneficial program called Türkiye Scholarships for the last 7 years.
The President of the Republic Erdoğan continued his speech. “The fact that even only this year there are 147 thousand applications to Türkiye Scholarships shows that this beneficial step has grown in waves and reached its goal. I see that the program has attained its original purpose since most of the applications to Türkiye Scholarships come from places that struggle with hardships such as Syria, Palestine, Afghanistan, Yemen, Iraq, Somalia and Myanmar. Currently, in our country, we are hosting 150 thousand international students from 182 different countries who receive education either through their own means or with scholarships. I am expecting that the universities in our country shall increase their capacities to meet the academic and social demands of our international students. Our goal is to increase the number of our students to 200 thousand in 2024. Allah willing, we shall again bring forth these lands that hosts the world’s most ancient educational institutions to the front rows. We made the first steps towards this goal by increasing the number of our universities to 206 from 76 and the number of academicians to 166 thousand from 70 thousand.”
Stating that he believed through international students a bridge of hearts that will be inherited by their families and their children is being build, Erdoğan continued his speech as follows: “My expectation from both our students and graduates is, despite where you might live or do, not to break ties with this country and with each other. Such a great relation network is a priceless treasure in the contemporary world. Most importantly, Turkish is now your common tongue. In Europe, our people with roots in Turkey is numbered above 6 million. In Balkans, Turkish is alive and well. From North Africa to Middle East, from Eastern Europe to South Asia, in a wide geography you can communicate, run your business and live your lives through Turkish.”
The Minister of Culture and Tourism Mehmet Nuri Ersoy underscored the important impact of Türkiye Scholarships program in career planning. The Minister Ersoy, highlighting that the needs of the countries are taken into consideration while granting scholarships to international studies, said: “Türkiye Scholarships take into consideration the needs of your countries along with your career planning, and grant the scholarships to you accordingly. You shall form the engineers, doctors, economists, artists and many of the staff of your countries. To leave your countries to receive education in another country, and above that, to graduate is nothing easy. Since you have achieved this, we are proud of you, and you should be proud of yourselves as well.”
The Minister Ersoy, stating that international students who graduated from Turkey had succeeded in many important works in their home countries, said “Prime ministers, members of parliament, academicians and many people who are renowned nationally and international from many occupations came forth amongst the members of the Turkey Graduates Family. Let it be known that you do not need great titles to achieve great things. Achievement is not individual phenomenon, but a social one. Do not think of your own destinies as a thing apart from your countries and your nations.”
The President of YTB Abdullah Eren, stating that Türkiye Scholarships program is continuing since 2012 within the framework of international student mobility, stated “Since 2012, YTB took the responsibility of Türkiye Scholarships program, in cooperation with Council of Higher Education (YÖK), it has greatly increased the number of international students in Turkey. Today, there are 150 thousand international students in Turkey. 16 thousand of them are given scholarships with the taxes of our nation and the means of our state, organized by YTB, and today, some of them graduate.” Eren declaring that this year, the applications to Türkiye Scholarships have reached a record-breaking number of 146 thousand 600, noted that since 2012, YTB has given scholarships to more than 27 thousand students.
Saying that the graduates shall return their home countries shouldering a greater responsibility, Eren said “Allah willing, you shall continue this vision as our voluntary ambassadors in your countries that Turkey is greater than Turkey and that Turkey is the hope of the world, and we shall continue to shoulder this responsibility with your help as well.”
The President of YTB Eren declared “We have formed 25 graduate associations in various countries of the world and through the means of these associations, we have included the elders and brothers who have active roles in the decision-making mechanisms in their home countries as members to these graduate associations.” Eren also stated that within this scope, today’s graduation ceremony was attended by Turkey graduates who act as ministers, members of parliament and academicians from many corners of the world.
Following the speech, the Minister of Culture and Tourism Mehmet Nuri Ersoy and the President of YTB Abdullah Eren presented the President of the Republic Erdoğan a painting of a map of Turkey formed by the names of the home countries of the students who are receiving education in Turkey, with the inscription “Turkey is greater than Turkey” written under it.
The President of the Republic Erdoğan presented the awards and the graduation certificates to the students who graduated with distinguishing degrees. Following the family photo shot, with Erdoğan’s words, “Here you are! Congratulations”, the students threw their graduation caps to the air and celebrated their graduation.