Our team won the OIB Special Awards during Turkey’s Innovation Week Ceremony. We were the only high school that competed in Shell Eco-marathon Turkey. Besides, Terakki has been participating in Shell Eco-marathon since 2005. I was very excited for the ceremony because the event was very crowded and there were cameras all over the place. I held our cup on the stage with one of the team members, Ege. With this special award, we won two cups during the Innovation week; the other cup was for the “Team Spirit” award. This was on the news in many media platforms. I am really happy for being a part of Shell Eco-marathon and Team Terakki.
After the ceremony, Mr. Bahtiyar asked me to wait in our stand in the exposition area. It was just like the Mini Maker Faire event. I answered the questions of the visitors and informed them about our team. During the spare times, I could visit the exposition and see/investigate the other projects in the exposition.
Some of the news articles about my opening speech and Terakki’s prices: Hürriyet, Milliyet, Terabook, Shell Eco-marathon Turkey
Area: Creativity – Service
Hours Completed: 1 – 6
This year, Shell Eco-marathon was organized in Turkey in TIM for the first time. The aim was to gain experience for the main competition that will take place in London in July 2016. 13 Turkish teams participated Shell Eco-marathon Turkey. As Team Terakki, we were one of the 13 teams. Each team was given a tent to get prepared for the competition on Sunday. We had to prepare the cars for the technical inspection to be able to compete. Our school has two cars competing in two different categories: urban and prototype. I was chosen as the driver of our prototype car because it was easy for me to drive the car thanks to my minion physical traits. By the end of the first day, our cars were ready for technical inspection. We successfully connected the lithium polymer accumulator of our urban concept car. All team members had to work collaboratively to avoid mistakes while completing the electrical circuit of our urban concept car. (Even though I was the driver of the prototype car, I was helping the modification of the urban concept car). By the end of the 2nd day, both of our cars passed the technical inspections, fulfilling all the necessary requirements for Shell Eco-marathon Turkey.
Meltem Tol, the social investment and internal communications advisor of Shell Eco-marathon, asked me to prepare an opening speech for the press briefing of the competition. For this reason, I was very excited and nervous about the competition at first. I gave the speech as one of the youngest participants of the competition. I was one of the few female drivers in the competition. Many TV channels and magazines interviewed me and asked me questions about the technical details of our cars as well as my own experiences as a team member. It was a great experience to be on TV after the competition and I felt really excited and honored.
We faced many difficulties during the competition. Most of the difficulties were because of the weather. The main problem was the track was wet. Unfortunately, they canceled the competition of the prototype category due to safety concerns. For this reason, I could not drive the car during the competition. However, they did not cancel the competition for the urban category. Although our urban car was still eligible, it was a rainy weekend and Mr. Bahtiyar was anxious about the safety of our urban car. Accumulator had to stay away from water. Unless, the car could explode. He was reluctant to take the risk and he didn’t want us to compete. As a team, we decided to convince him by taking all the possible precautions against the rain. We duct taped and siliconed all the open places on the chassis as well as the mudguards to ensure water could not leak inside the car. After hours of effort, we could finally convince him. I felt that working as a team made me a stronger insister and a better collaborator. Other teams were competing while we were trying to improve the safety of our car. Hence, our team got late for the competition. I was worried because the jury could disregard our results even though we had completed the laps. Fortunately, they decided to count our results. I can say that we tried our best to convince Mr. Bahtiyar and the juries. Our team won the “Team Spirit” prize and our urban concept electrical car won the third place in the alternative energy category. I was not surprised by the team spirit prize because I think that we deserved it.
Website: Shell Eco-marathon Turkey
Area: Action – Creativity
Hours Completed: 9 – 10
I participated in the Mini Maker Faire that took place in Istanbul Bilgi University. We had a stand in the faire and I was responsible for introducing Team Terakki and Shell Eco-marathon to the visitors. I tried to answer as many questions as I could. Especially the parents were really interested in our car. They wanted me to explain how our urban concept electrical car works. Some of the frequently asked questions were: “How many kilometers can it take per hour?”, “What is the material used in the car’s shell?”, “Do you know how to drive the car?”. I felt good about this activity because I liked informing people about our team. Their reactions kept me motivated because most of the visitors congratulated us for representing our country in the international competition. I had to stand up all day and deal with the visitors. Hopefully, my team mates were here to help me. They backed me up for the questions that I had trouble answering. This is the most beautiful thing about working in a team: immediately helping each other out in case of a problem.
Hours Completed: 6
Our supervisor Mr. Bahtiyar chose some team members to participate the annual Shell Eco-marathon Europe 2015 Meeting which took place in The Marmara Hotel Pera. I was happy to be one of them. The program of the meeting was quite loaded. At first we gathered in a convention hall where I got to meet people from different Turkish teams. I felt confident while I spoke to people and introduced our team. My strength here was that I was a good communicator because most of the teams were universities and I felt proud to be one of the youngest people there. Once we were seated, the presentation started. Luckily, our team sat at the front seats so I could pay my whole attention to the presentation. There were several presentations listed in the schedule below. Maybe the most important one was given by Gilles Vanier, Europe Technical Manager. He went over the important technical details to consider during and before the competition as well as the aim of Shell Eco-marathon. Since the competition is approximately a week long, he explained the whole program. He discussed the rule changes of this year’s competition. We realized that our car doesn’t suit some of the rule changes and it should be modified. For example a new rule wants all cars to have a dead man switch because of some accidents from last year. However, our car doesn’t have one. During one of the brakes, we talked about this with our teachers and emphasized on the importance of acting fast to fulfill the requirements of this year’s competition. At this point, I felt a little stressed because I knew it would be difficult. Although I suggested some ideas for the dead man switch, my friends thought it would be better to design it first. The other presentations were about the sponsor logistics firm Alışan Logistic, Rotterdam, and the use of social media to represent and advertise teams. Briefly, Alışan Logistic talked about the cars’ transportation to Rotterdam Ahoy. The other ones were generally about Netherlands and the Shell Company. During the presentations I didn’t hesitate to ask questions. People were surprised to see a high school student who was not shy to raise hands in front of everyone. I realized this when I observed their reactions. The presenters and the overall audience approached my questions with extra kindness and interest. I believe this is a clear benefit of being younger. At the end of the day I was really tired and overwhelmed with all the meeting. We were asked to introduce our team and give a short interview. A cameraman and an interviewer came to ask each of our duties in the team and our goals for this year’s competition. Mr. Bahtiyar gave brief information about us and then our photos were taken. We all wore yellow Shell sweaters which made me think that I was a part of a family. Shell Eco-marathon family.
Hours Completed: 6
Because of an unexpected motive, we didn’t have time to talk about the club in this meeting. Instead, we had a guest from Doğuş University, Prof. Dr. Serkant Ali CETIN, who is also one of the scientists working at CERN. During our club hour, we discussed deep concepts such as the creation of universe and quantum physics. I asked him a question: What if human mind was designed unqualified to discover the origin of our existence? I asked this question because I personally am worried about the answer of this particular question. What if everything that we are trying to discover is blocked in a way that we cannot access? What if all those experiments are just dead end streets? Although I raise these questions, I always believe that science is the most significant concept that human beings have ever developed. Thus, I know that it is constantly evolving with an indisputable enchanting progress. Even though the answer of these questions may be vague and generally pessimistic, I would like to go for Mr. Çetin’s optimistic answer: Human mind, brain is also expanding every day, we are evolving as well. You are right to be worried about those questions but don’t neglect the fact that intelligence is powerful and eternal.
To wrap up, today’s meeting couldn’t actually serve to our club purposes, however it provided an academic environment in which we could discuss complex concepts. I’m sure that the conversations had influenced the way we think about everyday physics. I realized that I can compel my mind when these kind of topics are being discussed. Maybe this is my way of knowing – by opening new windows. Today I was an inquirer and a thinker and I believe that I showed this by participating in the discussion and communicating.
It was the second meeting of the Shell Eco-marathon Club. This time, we were a small group of only 5 students. We are all inexperienced so we preferred to listen to our supervisor before we shared our ideas. As an introduction, he talked about the official rules booklet that was published for the competition. Mr. Bahtiyar wanted us to re-read that booklet to have a general view of the contest, basically what is forbidden, what is necessary etc. He also mentioned the development of our team, Team Terakki. I learned that our school has been participating Shell Eco-marathon for over ten years. This made me more enthusiastic about the process. Today I used my listening skills and tried to learn what it is expected from us. We all have to do research about the problems that we will be dealing with in the next few months.
Hours Completed: 1
It was the first meeting of the semester as a team. It was intended for informing the new members of “Shell Eco-marathon Club” including me. We discussed the general rules and concepts of the competition. Last year’s captain mentioned the problems that they encountered during the competition in Rotterdam and shared his experiences. I listened carefully to him and asked questions referring the problems. For this year’s competition we outlined the inadequacies and concerns of the team and the car. What can we do better this year? How can we modify the car? Who can find sponsors for this year? Which problems are the most crucial ones? Our teacher showed us the car’s accumulator and described its problem briefly with the circuit. I took an active role in the discussion and I suggested possible solutions. However, I decided that I needed to expand my technical vocabulary in order to interact more efficiently. Finally, we determined the fields that we will proceed in the team such as supplies, communication and electric. I volunteered to work in “security”, “electric” and “pilotage”- it would be amazing to drive our electric-powered car as a female and represent our school in that uniform.
Hours Completed: 1.5