Today, engineering means using scientific knowledge to transform nature and the intensive and effective use of information technologies for enhancing the capabilities and qualities of technological facilities while reducing their costs. The speed of technological development is increasing exponentially. Applications that would be considered science fiction only twenty years ago pervade our daily lives.
Since the industrial revolution that started in the 18th century, while striving to use the knowledge on nature for the benefit of humanity and while developing products based on that knowledge, we have perhaps achieved striking accomplishments but nature has been rendered almost uninhabitable, and we have not yet succeeded in reducing the gaps among human beings.
Global warming, which everyone has heard of, has not yet gained the priority it deserves on our agenda, and we as humans seem to be fast approaching the point of exterminating ourselves. Telecommunication technologies enable us to establish instant and visual contact with distant points of the world, but we observe every day how inequalities, misunderstandings and animosities among communities of people become more destructive rather than being reduced.
Engineers now hold responsibilities of stopping the destruction of the environment and to enhance mutual friendship and fraternity among human beings when applying scientific knowledge to life. Contemporary engineering can not only focus on increasing product capabilities and efficiency while reducing costs, but must also consider the environment and human issues. Innovation and creativity emerge as fundamental requirements of this new mode of engineering. Rather than combating with nature, we must now act towards making peace with it, and making the World liveable again.
In the Faculty of Engineering and Natural Sciences we have ten undergraduate programs in the following nine different departments.:
The Civil Engineering department has two undergraduate programs, one in English and one in Turkish, while all other programs are in English.
Together with various national and international Research and Development projects carried out by members of our faculty, the responsibility of establishing an Open Innovation Development and Testing Platform for Autonomous Vehicles (OPINA) given to a consortium led by our faculty, aims to establish an R&D Center to serve not only at the national but also at the European level. This Project provides the opportunity for our undergraduate and graduate students to participate actively in international projects. Beside students from our Automotive, Mechanical, Electric and Electronics, Mechatronics, Computer, Software and Industrial Engineering departments, our Civil Engineering students are also able to participate in such projects in the area of intelligent transportation infrastructures and systems. On the other hand, faculty members and students from our Genetcs and Bio-Engineering department actively participate in national and international projects in this area of technology whose importance is increasing globally at a very fast rate.
Our principal philosophy of education is to train professionals who have mastered the fundamental approaches and techniques of engineering, who have achieved competence in applying these innovatively and creatively to contemporary problems, who are acquainted with national and international industrial organizations and who will reach leading positions in the global race, with the engineering ethics and responsibilities they have assimilated. In our education as well as research work we greatly value our leading position in industrial collaboration. Our students gain hands-on industrial work experience in at least one firm during their undergraduate program.
Our PROMES ® practice is continuing successfully, whereby students in many programs are directly involved with actual industrial projects during their whole education from their first year until their graduation. Furthermore, students who participate in the CO-OP program are able to spend their last semester working in industry.
I would like to add that university education does not only consist of classes, laboratories and exams. University means sharing cultural and artistic experiences, sports, fun, hard work and repose as well as science and technology among rational individuals who respect all kinds of differences and who are conscious of their individual and social responsibilities. Our campus reflects this understanding. Along the same understanding, students are always welcome to the offices of academic and administrative staff.
Welcome to Okan. Best wishes to you all.