During the years of the Gulf War in the 1990s, my education business was facing a setback. My son had just been born, and in this struggle of life, whichever business I wanted to try asked me to have a “certificate.”
For the people who want to work in areas like real estate or insurance, every state in the U.S. stipulates a degree from particular institutes or colleges. In order to work in those areas, you need a license that you can only qualify for when you score at least 80 percent on the test. It is still the same today.
So, even if you are a worker who works on commission, you have to comply with a two-year-valid-license rule.
I was a computer engineer who faced several difficult exams, but I still remember how tough this certificate test was. When the license was about to expire, the same procedure had to be done from beginning to end for the purpose of learning recent developments in that field. If you move to another state, your license is not valid anymore and you have to qualify for the license in your new state, too.
The real estate business is the same as well, unlike in Turkey where people can establish their own real estate office whenever they want. If they want to do this job, they first learn the details of banking legislation, mortgages and land registers and then take a test to be qualified for a limited time. The system is still same.
The interesting thing is, in order to work as a plumber, electrician or painter, you also have to get a license. For the people who work without a license, there are significant monetary punishments. If you cannot meet the deadlines of a project, you have to pay compensation. If you delay three different times, you are prohibited from that profession for a lifetime.
It is not like that in Turkey. You cannot estimate a one-week job and finish it in a month. You cannot accept other projects while there is an ongoing one.
In Turkey, these standards should be determined by related associations as soon as possible, and an educational schedule must be started up by educational institutions immediately.
The trade and technical schools in Turkey are only for young people, and there is not enough demand for them. In addition, there are some other problems too. It would be so beneficial for our country if short but intense classes of certification to qualify for limited licensing were put into effect.
Other professions in our daily life, like taxi drivers, should not be able to have a lifetime license, either. They must have a similar kind of education process — at least, in order to communicate with tourists, they should be attending foreign language classes. The best example for this is what happened in Greece during the Olympic Games.
If we do these, we will certainly take a step forward and make progress.