Turkish students honor independence

The Republic of Turkey will celebrate its 75th anniversary in one month and the GW Turkish Student Association kicked off a month-long celebration with a party on the Gelman Quad Tuesday.

In addition to information about the nation’s culture and history, the event featured Turkish music and food. Students and faculty were urged to try traditional Turkish cuisine including roast meat called doner kebab, rice pilav, a cucumber and yogurt salad called cacik, and baklava.

“The food was very good, and they were very nice people,” said Julie Schull, one of numerous GW students and faculty who had lunch at the event.

Alyssa Rosinski, a student in the tourism administration program, said the food, which helped lure people to the event, also served to raise awareness.

“I would have had no idea that it was the 75th anniversary of the republic otherwise,” Rosinski said.

TSA President Halim Tansung, said the TSA has about 120 members and has become increasingly active in the past three years, recently establishing an umbrella organization known as the Assembly of Turkish Student Association-D.C. The organization includes students from area campuses including American, George Mason, Southeastern universities, the University of Maryland-Baltimore County and the University of Maryland at College Park.

Several events, designed to raise awareness of the Turkish culture, will be held in the month leading up to the Oct. 29 anniversary. A movie is scheduled for Oct. 11, and a panel discussion of Turkey-U.S. relations featuring Turkish Ambassador Baki Ilkin will be held Oct. 13. Turkish history, participation in NATO and Turkey’s policy of “peace at home, peace in the world” also will be discussed.

Additionally, $1 tickets for a raffle to win a round-trip ticket to Istanbul went on sale Tuesday and will be available all month long.

Also in honor of the anniversary, 70 presidents of Turkish Student Associations from across the nation will convene in D.C. to discuss various issues with Ilkin.

The month’s activities will culminate Oct. 29 with a slide show and presentation on Turkish culture, art and architecture by professional archaeologist Elif Gokclgdem in Marvin Center room 403. A party also is planned for that evening at which the drawing for the trip to Turkey will be held.

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