University student with financial difficulties denied education

Atakan Atalar, a second year student at Özyeğin University Pilot Department, was deprived his right to education. The university denied having promised on the internet scholarships to students with limited financial means.

Atakan Atalar’s ​​childhood dream was to become a pilot. Describing his passion the 21-year old said: "I would always build airplanes when other children were making cars with lego."

Atalar said he was sad for having to delay his dreams due to a money-based system.

After graduating from high school, Atalar, who won the engineering department with a 50 percent scholarship in the university exams he entered, decided to enroll in Özyeğin University, as they announced that they would provide scholarships to students who had a financial agreement with Ay-Jet and who had little finance means.

When he went to go to school in 2016, Atalar told ANF he was encouraged by a meeting he had with an executive of the university who promised him scholarship.

Stating that her mother was also witness to this conversation, Atalar said that when he talked about the possibility of financial inadequacy of her mother, Özyeğin talked about the school's credit system and assured him: "We never abandon our students."

Atalar, who was able to afford two years of English preparatory department at school and the first year of the Pilot Department, pointed out that only after the second semester of education, his family's financial situation deteriorated.

Stating that he applied to be granted the school's urgent need scholarship with documents proving his family's financial problems at the time, Atalar stated that his application was rejected.

Atalar asked the rector to know why his application had been rejected. Rector, Esra Gençtürk, said that there were no special credit system. When Atalar told him about the reassurances he had from Hüsnü Özyeğin himself, the rector said it was "nonsense". Atalar soon realised that there was nothing he could do when the rector threatened to call security.

I will not give up my rights!

Atakan Atalar will not be able to move on to the second semester. He finished the first semester of the second year with the status of honorary student.

Atalar condemned the fact that the right of education is linked to one's finance situation.

Özyeğin University stated that they would not make a special statement about the special situation of Atakan Atalay.

Inn the "Vision and Mission" section of Özyeğin University's website it is stated: "The University will create opportunities for talented and successful students who have limited resources with an effective scholarship system."

Clearly this is not so true, as yet another student is denied his right to education because of his financial situation.