Cem Hami

I  was born on 16th September 1950 in Nicosia Cyprus. After the local elementary education my schooling embarked on the planned road to continue at The English School Nicosia. This was sharply interrupted by the intercommunal violence that errupted in 1963 on the Christmas break of my second year at the school. Whence I became a resident of London. After Tollington Grammar School and Tottenham Technical College I obtained a Bachelor of Technology degree from Brunel University  in Applied Biology and a Master of Science degree from Exeter University in Phytopathology.

After the 1974 Peace Intervension by Turkey in Cyprus I found the idea of  a Turkish Cypriot State challenging and felt  that all Turkish Cypriots should contribute to its founding. I therefore took a teaching post at Turk Maarif College. Although the students were intelligent and energetic,  the idea of an education system consisting entirely of chalk and talk was choking and I found myself taking up employment in the Dairy Business back in the U.K. in 1983.

In the meantime a brilliant young man whom I came to know back in Cyprus  was breaking ground in setting up a University in the beloved little realm. His offer to set up a beer factory  in North Cyprus enkindled  my desire to get involved in genuine economic activity. Setting off many interconnections in my brain of a small state which would be scientifcally based in production, disproving all sceptics and mocking enemies,  earning its keep in sweat and sheer brain power. So I left the magical Kent countryside in 1994 to return to North Cyprus.

The above mentioned factory project which I believe was genuine at the time never materialised. I was given a teaching job at The Near East College where later in 2000 I was made Head of The Science Department by another brilliant old friend, the  present head of the college . As a result of many an innovating and hitherto unheard ideas of this man, Isilay Arkan, the college was growing in a furious manner.

Since the year 2000 I have laboured relentlessly no daubt the encouragement of  the above mentioned gentlemen being a single most important factor, to convey the importance of scientific thinking to our intelligent students. The science department of The Near East College has taken onto itself to simplify the scientific approach in the early years getting students interested in science subjects. Interconnecting science with reality at their level being one of the priorities in this venture. Labs have been set up to carry out pactical work. Many projects have been carried out which would help the student connect scientific thinking with agricultural production, with building materials that would save huge amounts on energy spending of the country and with protection of our fragile environment which oscilates between desert and the Mediterranean climate. Scientific literature is scanned regularly to further our vision and help spark ideas. The interest and success of our students has been breathtaking.

Two  of my main hobbies are gardening and painting.  Some of my paintings are shown below. My philosophy in painting is very much influenced by the great painter Cezanne who said that feelings must enter through the eyes and leave through the hand, but the brain must never be allowed to interfere with this flow. As soon as it does, the work is ruined.

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