EDUCATION AND OPPORTUNITIES

Deniz - Farmington, Minnesota
Entered on November 21, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30

I believe everybody should have equal opportunity for education.

I grew up in Turkey. I did what my family wanted me to do, which was to become a successful student. I haven’t thought too much about if I was lucky or not. I think I assumed that every person at my own age was receiving an education. Then I fell in love and got married. I moved to The United States because of my husband‘s job. At that time, I was a graduate student in Turkey. I finished my thesis in the US. Then I got pregnant and had a son.

Up to this part of my life everything was fine. Then, I started feeling depressed. I blamed my husband for bringing me to this foreign country and making me do nothing; I also blamed my son for feeling helpless and tired at the same time; I blamed my mom for being sick and at last I blamed myself for being weak. I didn’t have any plans for the future especially for my career. The world was changing every day and I had to restart from somewhere. Finally, I listened to my friends and family’s advice and received the help of a medical professional. I was on the path to recovery.

Last year I was looking at University of Minnesota’s website and dreaming myself as a student there. Suddenly I realized “College of Design” was planning to start a new program, Heritage Preservation and Conservation. The next day I started preparing for the application for admission. Even in that moment I remember feeling different, better.

The day I was going to learn the result, waiting on the phone and listening to that weird music, I felt so much stress. The guy on the phone was laughing when he said that I was recommended to the program.

Now that I am a student again, school occupies almost my entire day. I don’t have much time for my son or my husband. That wasn’t my purpose indeed, but I don’t feel unhappy. I feel lucky for being able to study in this country. In Turkey, many young people try really hard to study abroad and only some reach that goal. But instead of thinking of them I am thinnking about the other part of my country, the one that doesn’t get a chance to go to school and to get an education, especially the girls who are getting married at very young age by their parents and sacrificing their chance to be a teacher, doctor, journalist,… I haven’t experienced any such thing in my life. To be honest, I was lucky. I know how education can change one’s life forever like changed mine at past and how it changes now. The government has not given the same opportunities to the eastern part of Turkey that it has given to the western part because of the political issues between Kurdish people and Turkish government. For years, people living in eastern part of Turkey have not had many chances to become educated. But I have some hope that will change in the future, through “education”.

Education is important for everybody. We don’t think about this every moment of our lives. Everyone should have the chance for education. Everyone should know how education can change and shape their life. I know this, because I am one of the lucky ones.