Another comment to the argument of presidency system has come from Fethi Şimşek, founder of Doğa College: “We have tried presidency system in Doğa College and it has become successful.
The school becomes extremely different when there is a competent president. Two village-headmen cannot be in one village. Multi-headedness is one of the most important problems of a country. Turkey’s future is in the presidency system.”
We are in a great forest in Beykoz, Istanbul. There are no automobiles, no sound, and no sign of the city life. Instead, there are lots of kinds of animals, sport areas ranging from tennis to basketball, riding facility, flour mills, swimming pools and students that wander around. It is Beykoz campus of Doğa College. It is the first center that lays the foundation of 110 chain schools. We have talked with Fethi Şimşek, founder of Doğa College and President of Doğa Group, about their plans in education industry and new projects.
How did your story begin?
I was in a meadow Şanlıurfa between Birecik and Suruç in my childhood with fishes and turtles. After that, when I came to the mega city, I was shocked. I came to Istanbul to study chemistry, I became teacher. I was 21 years old in 1980, we, two partners, attempted our own initiative. We founded Kültür Dersanesi in an apartment with negative capital. In the time of Özal, after 1984-1985, entrepreneurs were couraged. We also grew in these years. After that, I founded English Time Language Schools. Then, when I saw this land in Beykoz, ‘Doğa (nature) concept’ was shaped in my head; I told myself that I could make this land an education valley. We have built here a modern natural life.
EATING TOMATO FROM ITS BRANCH
Children learn maths, physics like in the standard schools. What else?
We have ‘learning with experience model’ in here. A child must learn the nature and creation by experience. Child assumes that a tomato is grown in green grocery, or recognizes an animal from a caricature, does not have an idea about the nature, hasn’t ever touched a horse or caressed a sheep. They have the lack of love. Our teachers sometimes go to the forest while explaining angles. Our students plant and cultivate the soil, touch the animals, have riding training. They come to the kitchen and make jam. They see how the cow is milked or how the yoghurt is made. They can pick tomato from its branch.
Does this concept interest other countries?
Yes, it does. Education model with the nature concept is being examined and modelled as an EU Project for the time being. This model is shared with other countries. This Project is funded by the EU. They have allocated a fund of 500 thousand dollars. Ministry of National Education is also examining and modelling our student council system and presidency system.
COUNCIL IS MANAGING
What kind of system is that?
In our high schools we have student councils. Speaker has the room. For instance, when the school manager call me I can stand him up, but when the speaker call, I have to go. Turkish society’s future is education. Therefore, I really care about this issue. My other adventure’s reason is earning money and improve here.
So, you support congressional system?
We tried this on Doğa College and it succeed. When there is a competent president, school’s have a novel touch. Multi-head is one of the most important issues for the country. Turkey's future is a presidential system. Our President is choosen not by the parliament but the people, that is the de facto presidential system and it has amazing benefits. We know it well because we've tried this in Doğa College.
Annual price is 18-30 thousand lira
how the success rate in Doğa College?
DoğaCollege is a leader of Turkey on exam success. Our customer base of our most affluent families with kids and those kids will manage the future business life.. We have developed a model for this. This model is in usage by the world's 50-60 countries.
You said the children of wealthy families ... Is this an expensive school? Prices vary according to the campus, but the scale is between 18 thousand and 30 thousand. There are many schools in Turkey which much more expensive than us. We're not a school of happy minority.
University grows in 2016
When it comes to college? How much would you invest?
We are working heart and soul to cultivate 2016. We have a 70 acre site in Alemdağ, part of the Doğa University will surely be there. Currently we have put into the university's needs but rather an asset of $ 100 million lira to further increase this figure.
'Smart antennas' Project for 5G revolution
What else is included in Doğa group?
We have a federal structure. We bring the presidential system into business. I am a President, I have six states. For instance, Doğa College is a state and Doğa group is a second one. In the state, there are iron and steel plants in Iraq, we have a company on information technology, simple, an organic structure, farming and marble paving. English Time is an another state. Doğa Insurance and Doğa Hospital are another states directed by another group. We also have real estate business in the Doğa group, but now I'm mostly interested in company is Doğa Initiative.
What does Doğa Initiative do?
We have a smart antenna project that its research and development made in USA and Turkey. Specially, this project will be a much needed step in the 5G. This company also made protocol with Ericsson. Smart antenna is adopted at the beginning of our business world veteran from the University of Utah, Professor Bedri Çetiner. Also there is former Chairman of ICTA is Tayfun Acar. This investment is Turkey’s visionary projects. I paid a $ 1 million capital here. This project also received a large amount of a grant from TÜBİTAK. Ericsson wanted to work together immediately. The company's output value is already 30 million. Also negotiations on a partnership with 5-10 percent.
Kurdish citizens are not in the same basket with PKK
East is experiencing serious events. What do you think as a Southeast origin citizen?
This is an international game. I say this as the people of the region. I would not be here now if there was a discrimination. Out of the presidential system of outbreaks decreases the arguments that can be used in the hands of a more stable and allows to manage alone. International terrorist financiers and international players will stand still comfortable, but you have received a lot of excuses at their disposal. I say that we do not have any problems between citizens in Turkey. This is a terrorist act is completely pumped by outside. So, they mustn’t put the Kurdish citizens in the same basket with terrorist organization PKK.
Target is $ 300 million as soon as possible.
What is smart antenna you mentioned?
If we start talking its technology, we can’t settle a matter, but simply enter signals may come from which side we are talking about an antenna that can be returned to that side. In this way, you can see hundreds of tasks with a single antenna. 5G is a technology that can not be efficient without smart antenna. I predict the company will reach 100-300 million worth as soon as possible.
Someone doing perception management
Doğa College is called together with Fetullah Gülen for a long time…
There is no such thing. Maybe someone doing perception management. On the contrary, we've been competing for years. An operational life of 30 years. FEM Institution as well have been the beginning of the Kültür Institution. Anafen and Fatih Institution beside. One of them belongs to them and one to me. The possibility that such a thing matter to mind. and indeed we at the track in Turkey on condition tangled trail, you have to separate it.
I am not the master of the brand but servant
Do you have any expansion plans abroad?
Currently we are on 110 campus, we get 150 on campus soon, we have exceeded the limit of 100 thousand students. We are currently in Cyprus except Turkey. Other than that, we plan to open the world's many cities. Jeddah, Dubai, Azerbaijan within these goals. We receive many offers from abroad, but here, of course, the fact is the brand itself. I am not the master of the brand but servant. If Doğa College says that I will go to far, I would take it into space.