Pioneer Scholar Spotlight: Ezgi

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Pioneer Scholar Spotlight: Ezgi

Pioneer Spotlight Ezgi

“Pioneer showed me how to use the tools that I have and apply them to topics that I’m interested in.”

Pioneer Scholar Ezgi, from Istanbul, Turkey, reached for the stars when she applied for her Pioneer Research Program. What she found was new interests, a new direction, and a new appreciation for her own capabilities.

Ezgi already had a long-term interest in astronomy when she heard about Pioneer from fellow students. She says that Pioneer Academics is well-known at her high school, Robert College in Istanbul, and several of her friends had participated and found the program to be excellent. She hoped that Pioneer would give her an opportunity to do independent research of a kind that was not possible in her high school.

Ezgi’s Pioneer Research Program in the research area of Physics began with an introduction to mathematical computing. It is a field that was new to her, and that proved to be a life-changing discovery. Equipped with her new expertise, she was able to combine her life-long interest in astronomy with her new mathematical skills, particularly using MATLAB, to do original research in improving astronomical images through the use of computer technology.

In the process of doing her research, Ezgi made several important discoveries that helped her to grow in self-confidence. She had been dubious about the potential for doing online research in her field, but found that with just a computer and the internet, from her home in Istanbul she could “produce something that is tangible.”

She discovered that she was part of an international community. At first she was hesitant to ask established astronomers from around the world to share their images with a high school student. However, once she worked up her courage to ask, she found they were happy to help her to further her research. Her international cohort of peers were also helpful with their thoughtful comments on her paper, and an inspiration as she participated in their progress on their own programs.

Ezgi also learned how to find resources and write codes for her “uncommon” topic. There were limited resources available, but when she hit dead ends, her professor helped show her ways forward.

Organizing her paper was also a challenge. She found that to make an outline, she needed to plan ahead carefully, deciding in advance what she would need to include in the finished paper. And she gained a new appreciation of the reason for academic integrity “After I wrote my paper, I found it was something I valued so much that I would feel very sad if I found it someplace with my name not written under it.”

Perhaps most important, Pioneer helped Ezgi determine an entirely new direction for her life. Although she still loves astronomy, at Tufts University School of Engineering she will focus on mechanical engineering and computer science, and perhaps eventually will again reach for the stars through the study of aerospace engineering.

Dear educator friend,

In the critical process of preparing students to transition to college, you are key. The
ramifications of your guidance are far-reaching.

The Pioneer Research Program believes that it, too, has a role to play in preparing students of special potential and passion for learning. This is a role we trust you will appreciate knowing about. Our mission is to offer a deep and otherwise unavailable opportunity to exceptionally motivated young scholars who want to learn and research at the college level and to explore their potential for innovation.

What makes Pioneer a unique deep-dive learning experience is not just the mentorship of distinguished professors. It is the rigorous quality controls developed conjointly by Pioneer and Oberlin College. Professors (must) adhere to rubrics for

1) setting learning goals;

2) syllabus development;

3) oversight, feedback and evaluation, and

4) grading standardization.

This rigorous academic system is supported by thorough admission process and a high-minded ethics code. The combination gives students an exceptional learning experience that is brought to fruition in a college-level research paper documenting their findings.

You can follow this link Pioneer’s concrete academic system to learn more about the academic system. Academic quality control and academic oversight assure Pioneer’s focus is on learning and learners, and therefore all of our practices were built upon the following principles:

No conflict of interests Pioneer’s academic ethical standards
Because of its high academic and ethical standards, the Pioneer program has earned the trust of college admissions departments and formed the basis for the ground-breaking collaboration with Oberlin College. Pioneer scholars get two college credits upon completing their Pioneer research.

Click to learn about Pioneer and Oberlin College's groundbreaking academic collaboration.

Pioneer has a rigorous admission process. Students who have genuine academic interests and are highly motivated are a good fit with Pioneer’s values. Pioneer’s founding board insisted that Pioneer commit to a professor-blind policy during the application process, ensuring that applicants have authentic field interest and correct priorities. Consequently, no information about professors is released before admission to the program. This policy is much appreciated and respected by universities. Professor-blind admission policy
On this page is the critical information needed to meet your needs.

If you have additional questions, feel free to let us know how we can help you by emailing or calling 855-572-8863.


Matthew Jaskol

Founder & Program Director