The day of the 62nd Anniversary of the founding of our university was celebrated on Friday, May 25, 2018, with a ceremony held at the Cultural and Convention Center (KKM). In the first section of METU Day, METU Outstanding Service and Appreciation Awards were presented in the KKM Kemal Kurdaş Hall. In the second part of the ceremony, Turan Baskan Service and Incentive Awards were given to the administrative staff of our university. The Service Plaques were given to our retired academic and administrative staff who gave service to our university for 20 years, and Service Documents were presented to our members who completed 45, 40, 35, 30, 25, 20 service years at METU.
At the opening of the METU Day Ceremony, the rector of the METU, Prof. Dr. Mustafa Verşan Kök mentioned that: "As METU, we are the university that represents our country most successfully on international platforms with the level that we have reached in the fields of education, research and application in 62 years." Rector Kök said that one of the most important ones among the many privileges of METU is its alumni's commitment and support for the university. Rector Kök stated that "METU Graduation Day" is a true home return day and meeting festival for thousands of graduates and their families. He ended his speech by presenting "Outstanding Service Award" to Adnan Bali and Prof. Dr. Ruşen Keleş; as well as "METU Appreciation Award" to Dr. Asuman Özdağlar, Yıldırım Şimşek and Murat Yetkin while expressing gratitude personally and on behalf of METU.
In the ceremony, Tuncay Doğu's students in the "Singing Class" from Music and Fine Arts Department and METU Singing Chorus gave a concert with "Vatan Marşı Zekiyem, Duyuyor musun Bizi, Bu ODTÜ'nün Sesi" songs, and Cem Türkay accompanied them by piano.
METU Senate Special Award was given at METU Night, in İstanbul on 12 May, 2018 to Vehbi Koç Foundation (VKV) which was founded on 17 January, 1969 as the first private foundation of the Republic of Turkey for supporting the education in our country and organizing events to create equal opportunities in education, in addition to establishment of the 3rd Dorm in our university by Vehbi Koç in 1968 as a donation; for projects, scientific meetings and events performed by Vehbi Koç Ankara Research and Application Center (VEKAM); for surviving of Ankara Bağ Evi which has a traditional value; for creating Ankara Library; for outstanding services towards cultural heritage and the protection of the city's memory.
Due to the social, scientific and cultural contributions to our country, Türkiye İş Bankası Board Member and General Manager Adnan Bali and Prof. Dr. Ruşen Keleş were awarded with "Outstanding Service Award" as well as Professor Dr. Asuman Özdağlar, Yıldırım Şimşek and Murat Yetkin were presented METU Appreciation Award by the Senate of METU.
Turkey İş Bankası Board Member and General Manager Adnan Bali; because of the success in senior management, providing finance for investment projects to the development of Turkey, doing some long-term environmental projects for the creation of forest areas within the framework of social responsibilities, supporting students and education through various projects and contributing to unearth and carry the rich archeological heritage of our country into future;
Professor Dr. Ruşen Keleş; due to the contributions in the field of urbanization and environmental politics, producing a Turkish dictionary in the field of urbanism with the responsibility of language that the scientists should have, the services provided by respected national and international organizations and voluntary organizations in terms of the municipalities, cooperatives and environmentalist movements, beside his academic productivity, the contributions of training of countless scientists and professionals were awarded with Outstanding Service Award by the Senate of METU.
Professor Dr. Asuman Özdağlar; due to the development of optimization methods, doing a holistic analysis of economic and social interactions in economic and social network systems, the valuable scientific contributions to game theory in the department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), one of the world's leading universities in engineering; and taking the outstanding responsibility to be the first woman and the first Turkish department head in the same department;
Yıldırım Şimşek, due to successful social responsibility projects developed for the problems of education in addition to the promotion of METU since he became the head of METU Antalya Alumni Association in 2014, METU Youth Park Project that he designed and successfully implemented especially for preparing high school 10th and 11th grade students for future and educating them in various topics who have low chances of chances in university entrance exam, and financial difficulties, carrying out Runatolia Marathon which contributes to METU Scholarship Fund;
Murat Yetkin; for his long and successful career in various media; his consistent and respectable journalism; besides his daily column, his meticulously written books named "Ateş Hattında Aktif Politika, Tezkere: Irak Krizinin Gerçek Öyküsü, Avrupa Birliği Bekleme Odasında Türkiye, Kürt Kapanı: Şam'dan İmralı'ya Öcalan ve Meraklısı İçin Entrikalar Kitabı" which offer an insight into our recent history, were awarded with "METU Appreciation Award" by the Senate of METU.