Oh boy. How to answer this question without writing an essay.
I developed a deep interested in Turkey while taking Advanced Placement European history during my sophomore year of high school. My textbook literally had only two sentences that related to Turkish history. But somehow that still got my nerdy attention.
When I decided to compete in my school district’s National History Day contest (an awesome event where nerds like me gather) I decided to do a website on the foundation of the Republic of Turkey. And my little project ended up winning at district and state before placing among the top ten in the nation for its category.
During this 8 month process I feel in love with Turkish history and culture. I knew that at some point in my life I wanted to visit Turkey and learn even more.
When I submitted my application to ISEP I honesty didn’t expect to be placed in Turkey because the acceptance rate was low. But somehow I got in and I’m beyond grateful.
If you’re interested in the project, it’s called “Death of an Empire, Birth of a Republic: The Modernization of Turkey“. It’s still up because I got emotionally attached to it and haven’t been able to delete it.
I was a sophomore student who wanted to graduate but didn’t know how college would be financially feasible. I was able to get a scholarship for my project that greatly helped me during my Freshman year of college. Somewhere on the internet there is an awful picture of me trying not to cry at the National History Day 2012 Awards ceremony. Thank you, camera guy.