The US-Turkey relationship extends farther than security, economic, and humanitarian issues; as the bilateral relationship has incorporated cooperation regarding education and cultural exchange. Education is a vital aspect of this relationship as it directly contributes to the development of future policymakers, scholars, and entrepreneurs.
The strong link between the U.S. and Turkey’s higher education sectors is important for both countries, as well as their bilateral relationship. It offers students a competitive advantage in the global economy, in addition to a boost for each country’s own colleges and universities.
This academic connection only stands to increase in the coming years, and bring the U.S. and Turkey closer together. Several Turkish and U.S. universities have established exchange agreements, including dozens of top-tier U.S. institutions, from Columbia University to Harvard College to Georgetown University.
From a global perspective, Turkey has partnered with NATO in the education sector for several years. In 1999, NATO launched the Partnership Training and Education Centres Initiative (PTEC) which was created in order to develop training and education activities for future scholars. Turkey is home to the Turksih PfP Training Centre and has aided in educating thousands of people in strategic communications, energy security and global peace.
A significant proportion of the faculty at many Turkish universities have earned their graduate degrees in the United States. The exchange of ideas, in addition to the ability to gather a unique understanding of the other country provides individual based international cooperation and furthers objectives for harmony in the international community.
The US and Turkey have and will continue to benefit from the continued cooperation over and investment in the educational sector. This collaboration grants both nations a key opportunity for commonality and mutual benefit which will only help create a positive trajectory in the bilateral relationship. The educational sector is integral when discussing US-Turkey relations as it puts a humanistic focus on foreign policy and helps develop the nations’ future leaders. Beyond the US-Turkey bilateral relationship, educational opportunities throughout the international community allow the developments of new ideas and relationships to form.