N: What do you owe these moments of decision to? What did you believe in?
A: I studied at a co-educational village school in a thirty-four-house village. We had only one teacher. Lessons were divided in two, audio lessons and silent lessons. Since there was only one classroom and one teacher at the school, the teacher couldn’t keep up with everyone. You read a book during the silent lesson, and the teacher would tell you about that subject in the audio lesson. My brother was a music teacher in Amasya. I used to think that if there was a music teacher, there was probably an art teacher too. "What is a painter?", "What is an artist?" I didn’t know. I used to say that I was going to be an art teacher. Actually, when I was in primary school, I made my decision about painting… My leaving the village was because I was able to go to secondary school. My brother was a teacher in the Suluova district of Amasya at that time, I went next to him. I was enrolled at Imam Hatip Secondary School and that’s where I studied.
N: Didn't it happen at your request?
A: No, it wasn't something that I particularly preferred. I didn't want to continue, I didn’t feel comfortable.
N: Were you ever in conflict with your family about this?
A: I was, yes. I said "I am leaving school, my education life is over now”. Then they said "What are you going to do?". "I don't know, let me go and learn a profession in an industry”, I said. “It’s best he goes to a vocational high school”, they said. I went to a vocational high school. I studied in the electrical department. I came to Istanbul after I finished high school.
N: There are many young people who have not been able to make the choices that they wanted regarding their education and professional life. They know what they want, however, that road exhausts them and they give up. Would you like to give them advice and what needs to be done about this issue?
A: I would advise them to be stubborn. At all costs... I am very stubborn. If I put something in my head, I work like crazy no matter what happens until I do it. I would not give up on it. They shouldn't give up either. For example, Village Institutes are amazing. Now they are developing and implementing new education systems similar to Village Institutes in northern countries. I think this is a successful method.