Kurdish Speaking University to Open in Diyarbakır

22 05 2013

Diyarbakır province is preparing to house the first Kurdish speaking university by 2016 – a trilingual institution that is mainly expected to address Mesopotamian people.

Nilay VARDAR – nilay@bianet.org

Diyarbakır – BIA News Desk, 21 May 2013, Tuesday

Diyarbakır province is preparing to house the first Kurdish speaking university by 2016 – a trilingual institution that is mainly expected to address Mesopotamian people.  The project dates back to the establishment of Mesopotamia Foundation with the initiative of 300 people including intellectuals, human rights activists, academicians, businesses people and NGO representatives. Among the notable co-founders of the foundation included Şiwan Perwer, a well-known Kurdish artist.  While the location of the university campus remains undetermined, it is expected to open by the academic year of 2015-2016. Its name is expected to be Mesopotamia University. Ramazan Tunç, the general secretary of the foundation, said they are in the process of completing procedures with Turkey’s Higher Education Institution (YÖK) and Education Ministry.

Trilingual education

Kurdish, Turkish and English are expected to be the primary educational language of the university. The foundation is also working on to include Assyrian and Armenian in the near future. For those who do not speak Kurdish or English, there will be language courses.    The university will mainly focus on humanities, applied sciences and medicine – the foundation will ultimately determine the departments after a thorough research.

“Kurdish language will integrate with sciences”

“The idea of a Kurdish speaking university came from an urgent need,” Tunç said. “It will fill in the gap for societal needs as well as science. Our goal is to create a multilingual educational institution. We will overcome the barrier on mother tongue in Turkey through a private university. Kurdish language will integrate with sciences.” He also added that the university will be accredited internationally and cooperate with several universities in Norway, Sweden and UK.

“All Mesopotamia inclusive”

The university is expected to appeal to a variety of students in the Mesopotamia region – especially from Iraq, Syria and Iran.  Diyarbakır will become a cultural and industrial hub after this process,” Tunç continued.  “We are quite optimistic. The university will find enough resources to sustain itself and even grow.” There is currently only one public university (Dicle) in Diyarbakır and a private one (Selahattin Eyyübi) is on the way. (NV/BM)

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