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Trading Turkey for cheesesteaks

America is a land of invention — and re-invention.

Sumbul Kiroglu already had a successful career in her native Turkey but was facing her 30s thinking that there was more out there. She was determined to change her stars.

With a bachelor’s degree in geological engineering and an eight-year career at the Koza Gold Corporation working in petrology and minerology, Kiroglu went for a complete reset.

Kirolgu set her sights on America, eventually settling in Port Richmond.

“In my previous career, I had knowledge, but I lost my curiosity and imagination,” Kiroglu said. “I am always thinking about the next step. I didn’t see a future in my current field.”

For most people, not knowing what her future field would be could present a problem. Kiroglu saw it as a challenge.

In America, there was opportunity. However, there was no job. There was no family or friends to embrace her in a far-off land. There wasn’t even a language. Kiroglu spoke very little English.

“Knowledge is power,” Kiroglu said. “But knowledge is limited. Imagination is limitless.”

Once on America’s shores, Kiroglu attacked English as a second language courses with Kaplan International and Camden County College in New Jersey.

As her language skills improved, Kiroglu began turning her attention to finding a new career.

She saw the healthcare field as a strong possibility, starting with a CCC associate’s degree in massage therapy. While completing those studies as Camden County College, Kiroglu came across a flyer for Neumann University’s transfer scholarship program.

A faulty QR code on the flyer was not near enough to deter her. Kiroglu saved the contact information on the poster and emailed Neumann assistant director of transfer recruitment Sarah Margulis.

“When Sumbul first reached out, it was clear that she had researched Neumann and the scholarship well,” Margulis said. “She had a plan in place. When our president presented her the scholarship during our Accepted Students Day, it showed in her face how grateful and excited she was for this opportunity.”

Kiroglu’s interest and ambition were a perfect fit for Neumann. She was awarded a full-tuition transfer scholarship to Neumann. Her studies in Health Sciences put her on track to graduate in the spring of 2026.

“The scholarship has changed my life,” Kiroglu says. “It boosted my self-confidence and made me see my potential. I’m visible now. I trust myself.”

Energized, Kiroglu has aspirations to combine her old life and the new, combining engineering, technology and her newfound passion, healthcare.

Count Neumann assistant dean for health sciences Hubert Lee among her biggest boosters.

“Sumbul is an outstanding student with great potential in the health care field,” Lee said.  “She is hard-working, engaged and has assimilated extremely well to the United States.”

With her studies coming into focus, Kiroglu is beginning to turn her thoughts to the next step. She hopes to leverage her talents to help develop advanced medical devices.

Her ambition is clear from her Linked-In profile. Betting against Kiroglu is a losing proposition.  

“My ambition is to merge my engineering acumen with advanced fields like artificial intelligence, especially in healthcare applications,” Kiroglu said. “I am enthusiastic about harnessing AI to revolutionize diagnostics, wellness strategies and overall health experiences.”

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