When visiting a village, people usually chat with locals and get a taste of rural life. However, in Turkey's unique Mathematics Village, wild equations, geometry, algebra and quantitative calculation are what interest visitors most.
Throughout this hot summer, students gather in Turkey's western town of Sirince for lectures by renowned mathematician Ali Nesin, 61, who founded a mathematics school in the village in 2007 for those who love mathematics.
"Nesin believes whole-heartedly that he can change the world and the unique space he has created in the Mathematics Village is proof of this," Xinhua news agency quoted Ayhan Dil, a professor from the Akdeniz University Mathematics Department in the Mediterranean province of Antalya.
Dil, 38, who holds a PhD degree in mathematics, volunteered in the village since it was first established to pass on his experience to students.
According to figures released on the website of the village, more than 10,000 students from primary schools to universities annually attend the curriculum fixed by Nesin and other professors in the 5.4-hectare small village, especially in the summer.
As stated on its website, the Mathematics Village has an "immutable principle never to refuse any student on a financial basis," meaning that if students do not have the money, they can still come and immerse themselves in the world of numbers and equations.
For his dedication in building such a haven for future intellectuals, Nesin recently received the prestigious Leelavati Award by the International Mathematics Union.
Nesin, who has been successfully pursuing his career as a mathematician in France and the United States, returned home in 1995 to head the Nesin Foundation, a non-profit institution devoted to providing educational opportunities for less fortunate children.
He launched his dream of a mathematics paradise with over 100 students from his Bilgi University in Istanbul. It has become a beautiful place and peaceful environment with amphitheatres, open-air lecture rooms and a library, all of which were organised by volunteering mathematicians who give lectures to students.
"We have all the comfort that we need and students are welcome to come and participate in the courses even if they don't have any money at all. The important thing is to perform mathematics," Dil said.
"Nesin is a real character, during the class he is entirely taken by what he is doing and most of the time he does not know what the conclusion of his presentation will reveal. It is impossible not to feel and share his passion and excitement," he added.
Notably, Nesin's most unique work was carried out amid difficult economy, as his small village enjoys no state funding. As what the village website says, "what is important is not to solve the problem, but to understand the problem."
"The village is an instrument to discover oneself through mathematics which is at the essence of life," said Dil.
Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK