SPO’s First International Chapter – New Beginnings

The Alpha Delta chapter became part of the SPO family as of May 2016. They are the first international chapter located in Akdeniz University in Antalya, Turkey.

New members share, “Alpha Delta is meaningful to us in that alpha, means ‘first’ and delta means ‘change’. Given our status as the first SPO chapter in Turkey as well as outside of the US, we hope to encourage new beginnings in our own country and beyond in the name of SPO.”

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The first SPO member induction ceremony was performed on September 30, 2016. Pictured (back row, left to right) Hatice Karakaş, Aslı Çıtak, Türkan Yılmaz (faculty), Elif Güngör, Tuğba Bahar, Bengisu Belirdi, Sevim Arınç, Seda Kocabıyık, (front row, left to right) Emine Kaya, Yıldıray Özbek (Dean), Jason Holdsworth (faculty), Özgür Arun (faculty), Mert Ersözlü, (members & members elect not pictured: Hüseyin Recepoğlu, Çağrı Elmas, Sanem Çetin, Hatice U. Baydemir, Halil İmancıoğlu, Nil Meral, Tunahan Yakar)

The first task of the chapter was to translate the SPO By-Laws into Turkish, which have since undergone some minor revisions. All members are encouraged to be actively engaged in at least one of their three working groups, namely a project, social media, and newsletter group.

The first project undertaken during the fall 2016 term is “1 semester 1 library” (the name is more catchy in Turkish!). Chapter members have each purchased a book (total of 14 books) on topics and genres including Russian, Scandinavian, African, Iranian, English, American, and Turkish Literature, and well as at least two poetry books, a novel, a children’s book, and at least one book by a woman author. One book is being given out per week throughout the fall term to a newly enrolled gerontology student who rated gerontology as their first choice of study in the national university application process. Additionally, the project group is presently planning to do a service project in a village in their province as well as preparing to apply for funding from the European Union to construct a portable time tunnel representing the lifestyles of various age cohorts in Turkey during the 1960’s, 70’s and 80’s. If the project is accepted for funding, it will be carried out in the name of the Alpha Delta SPO chapter and the SPO members will provide oversight. The goal is to enable today’s youth, in particular, to engage with representatives of youth from decades past via the time tunnel ‘festival’ in several different locations around Turkey. Be sure to look out for details in the upcoming newsletter.

Alpha Delta’s social media group has established the following accounts: Twitter: SPO Alpha Delta @spoakdeniz and email: spoakdeniz@gmail.com . The goal through social media is to share our activities in SPO Alpha Delta. Take a look at what they are up to on Twitter via SPO Alpha Delta @spoakdeniz . Should you decide to make Antalya (otherwise known as the Turkish Riviera) a destination for research or vacation, look them up!

“The Alpha Delta Chapter also wishes to congratulate their own Assoc. Prof. Dr. Özgür Arun on being selected as the 2017 recipient of the AGHE Rising Star Early Career Faculty Award.”