Being A Boarding Student at The Koç School

Being a boarding student at The Koç School is about forming friendships you know will last for long years from the very first day. Alumni of the boarding department do not break their ties with the Boarding Department and they are happy to share their past experiences with the new students by joining activities organized throughout the year.


Utku Aksaray / Class of 2020

“Imagine that at 14-15 years old, you find yourself in one of the biggest cities in the world and maybe the toughest school in that city after coming from a city that is smaller than any district of Istanbul. It is an ocean, without a doubt… You get scared. You turn your head and see the same concern on another child’s face. They give you some nuts and the worried expression on your face disappears a little. Days go by, exam dates approach as you, a person who has never gotten a low grade in your life before, barely get passing grades from your assignments and think about how you will get through the exams and prep school. Then you see a student from higher grade levels invite you to a match two days before the exams; football, basketball, volleyball…You find out during the match that he couldn’t even get half the grades you could when he was your age. Well, then how did he pass his grade level? He just did. And it’s been four years since he did… So you say to yourself, it all works out somehow. You sleep much better than you did before, maybe because of the things you have heard or maybe because you got tired from the match. That is what the boarding department is about my friend. Even though it’s been five years since I ate those nuts and some of my friends left the dormitories, we still laugh when we come together and the next thing you know, we start talking about our dormitory memories again.”


Ceren Dide Türk / Class of 2020

“Being a boarding student means transforming your new room, which you have just settled into with a wardrobe full of items, into a warm home with the countless memories you will accumulate in every corner. Being a boarding student means being an individual who can undertake major responsibilities at a very young age, who is aware of the problems of today’s world, who can think in a versatile way and stand on their own feet. Being a boarding student means to create a bond and become a huge family with a few strangers whom you discover every inch of every street in a city you do not know, with whom you cry and laugh together from time to time. Moreover, it means to become a child again with a laugh whenever you see those few strangers no matter what your age is. From traditional inter-class sports tournaments to warm New Year’s Eve celebrations, from various concerts and museum trips to pleasant interviews, from group knowledge contests to fire drills where you get caught in the middle of a shower; studying at The Koç High School as a boarding student was the thing that made me who I am, the best thing that has ever happened to me in high school. If I had a chance to go back and choose again, no doubt that I would choose studying as a boarding student all over again.”


Alp Baran Erkul / Grade 10

“The biggest reason I wanted to study as a boarding student in The Koç School was that I wanted to change my life dramatically. Studying at a boarding school meant making a fresh start for me and it made me very excited. During my time at the boarding department, I made friends from all over Turkey and had a chance to meet people from different places. I learned new things thanks to their different perspectives and improved myself at the boarding department. We became a family with my friends at the dormitories and we have always supported each other. And it’s all about fun times at the boarding school! Besides all those things, I have become a more responsible person by staying at the boarding department. While I was fulfilling my duties at the boarding department, I learned how to handle daily chores by mostly making funny mistakes. That enhanced my self-confidence and courage by showing me that I can be self-sufficient.”


Arda Şen / Grade 11 

“It was a big decision for me to come to Istanbul from Tokat and study as a boarding student because I had lived with my family until the end of Grade 8. At first, I had a very tough time adapting to the school and boarding life but my friends from the same grade level and higher grade levels intervened and helped me a lot with everything, especially my studies. The boarding environment, where you live together with your friends, bonds and close friendships are established very easily, is also a space within a green environment, free from the noise of the city. Moreover, offering many opportunities to socialize, ranging from fitness rooms to football fields, the boarding life helps us get ahead in life in every aspect.


Deniz Taşdemir / Grade 11

“We live in a place that is intertwined with nature, away from the chaos of the city, and as we are away from our family, we gain new experiences every moment. I can simply say that we are learning about life.  That is why it is a very big advantage for us to study as boarding students at The Koç High School. We have learned to better express ourselves and live in an organized way in this warm family environment our teachers and friends from higher grade levels have created. The best thing about being a boarding student is finding a chance to get to know the people very closely as you live with them.”


Ümmünaz Yanık / Class of 2021

I still remember how lonely I felt as I was standing at the parking lot in front of the school when my parents left five years ago. Fortunately, the darkness of the evening covered my tears for a while and I didn’t feel much worse. I remember thinking a lot as I walked the long and narrow path towards the dormitory doors that said “B2 Girls Dormitory” on top. I almost turned into a question myself after asking “Will I get used to this place one day?” so many times. 


Luckily, it didn’t take too long for me to answer that question. The five years I spent at the dormitories went by so fast and in such an unforgettable way that it feels as if that first day I arrived at this school was yesterday. My first encounter with independence, which would enable me to find who I am, to make lifelong friendships that I could not even dream of, and to spend my high school life in a place where I could discover and experience all of these things, was only possible through me becoming a boarding student. 


What it means to be a boarding student is hidden in the bonds you form rather than sharing a room with a group of people. It means so much that the bonds you form on the very first day still hold you close to each other even if years pass by. You actually become characters from a story in which you all grow up together, evolve and grow stronger as you are trying to discover life with a group of young people who feel just as lonely and scared as you are.  I couldn’t even imagine that those four confused girls at the beginning (my roommates and myself) would transform into such strong young women with unique talents of their own. In this case and in such a story, it is not possible to forget the place you grew stronger in together nor the people who were with you.