Updated: Jul 6, 2020
Today, I would like to share a brief, lovely, and real story with a reminder that seeing and experiencing certain things in life changes young people's minds and has lifelong positive impacts on them and their contributions to society!
There is this highly successful professor called Selcuk Sirin at New York University. He is originally from a village in northeast Turkey. Considering the limited resources and experiences in this small village, what he has accomplished in his life is quite an achievement.
When he was in high school, he was failing in many classes because he did not see the school's importance. At that time, his biggest life goals were to marry his neighbor's daughter and to open a small shop in the village. Considering the environment he lives in, this was the best he could think of for his future.
One day his father showed him a picture of some young people in front of a building. He was so impressed by this image, the way they dressed, the location, everything. He asked his father who and where these people were. His father said these are the university students at one of the country's top universities. And that one picture changed his life forever.
He took his classes very seriously, worked hard, and got accepted to the same university in the picture where only the top 1% of the students in the nation were admitted based on a university entrance exam. Still to this date, he thanks his father for that one picture he showed him while he was in high school.
As educators, it is important that we find ways to expose our students to real-life problems, phenomenons, and experiences so that they have the chance to find their passions in life.
"It’s all background experience and listening and exposure. That’s why it’s so important for people today and during any time to expose your children to lots of different kinds of things". — Al Jarreau