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Istanbul Project 2015 | July 17, 2024

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The Group.

Istanbul Project students learn to make Turkish food, during lessons with one of Istanbul’s top chefs. Clockwise from left: Sarah Eyd, Amira Zubairi, Mashal Noor, Ali Tejani, Tiya Thomas, and Hannah Chanatry. (Photo courtesy Cookistan).


Students on our first stop, Venice.

Practicing videography, during a side trip to Venice, Italy. (Photo: Jack Zibluk)

The Istanbul Project is a month-long summer multimedia journalism laboratory that takes university students and young professionals to Istanbul, Turkey, where they practice working as foreign correspondents.

In the summer of 2015, the program’s fifth year, student journalists and graduate interns from around the world learned about international reporting and multimedia storytelling, and worked with interpreters to tell stories about the city.

The project is led by the Institute for Education in International Media (ieiMedia), and in 2015 was co-sponsored by the University of Jamestown, Bahçeşehir University and Big World Multimedia, LLC.

Our Mission

We aim to help develop the next generation of foreign correspondents, by giving student journalists a chance to report on difficult and sometimes confusing international issues, under the guidance of experienced faculty.

A student in class.

Discussing Turkish history, in international reporting class. (Photo: Jack Zibluk)

The 2015 team reported on rising tensions among the Turkish government, newly-empowered Kurdish political forces and ISIS, and were in Turkey when the government announced it would allow the United States to use Turkish bases in Incirlik and Diyarbakır to attack ISIS positions in Syria.

Student reporters also interviewed some of Turkey’s nearly 2 million Syrian war refugees; researched the cultural image of belly dancing; ventured into little-known bazaar districts; and explored Istanbul’s distinctive urban food culture.

They worked in teams, writing stories, and shooting photographs and video, under the direction of ieiMedia’s award-winning faculty.

We hope you enjoy their work.

Our Interpreters

Bahcesehir University journalism students served as our students’ interpreters and guides. Led by program organizer Sinem Aydınlı, interpreters Nisa Gürbüz, Kübra Altınbaş and Elif Kartal were essential to helping ieiMedia students develop, understand and present their stories. We thank them warmly for their help.

A student in cooking class.

Several students observed Ramadan, and enjoyed participating in iftar, the communal meal that breaks the daily fast. (Photo: Jack Zibluk)

Our University Hosts

Bahçeşehir University is home to Turkey’s foremost journalism program, part of the school’s Faculty of Communication. Established in 1998, Bahçeşehir is a “foundation university,” offering an all-English language curriculum to its 17,000 students. It maintains its own roster of international campuses, in Washington, Toronto, Berlin, Rome and Hong Kong.

Under an exchange agreement between ieiMedia and Bahçeşehir University, each year several Bahçeşehir students study at another ieiMedia site. In 2015, Mete Aker and Yusef Ince studied in Urbino, Italy.

Istanbul Project 2016: June 2-June 30

In the summer of 2016, Istanbul Project university students and young professionals will again travel to Istanbul, to practice working as foreign correspondents. They’ll study Turkish language and culture, multimedia journalism, and international reporting. They’ll then go out on assignment with their interpreters, to write and shoot for this digital magazine, or as junior correspondents interning for professional publications.

If you are a university student or graduate interested in international reporting, we hope you’ll join us!

Prof. Mary D’Ambrosio, director

The Istanbul Project

© 2015 ieiMedia / All rights reserved