A beneficent businesswoman. She was
born in Ankara in 1928. She is the eldest daughter of Vehbi Koç and Sadberk
Hanım. She is the sister of the famous businessman Rahmi Koç and Suna Kıraç,
aunt of Mustafa Koç. She completed her education in Istanbul American College
for Girls and in German Goethe Institute. She knows English and German. She
married Dr. Nusret Arsel in 1956.
Semahat Arsel worked as Executive
Board Member of Koç Holding AŞ (1964-72 and 1972-96), Chairwoman of Executive
Board of Vehbi Koç Foundation, TURYAT Chairwoman of Executive Board, Chairwoman
of SANERC (Semahat Arsel Nursing Education & Research Center), Vehbi Koç
Foundation Member of Executive Board respectively. She is the Vice Chairwoman
of Florence Nightingale Foundation and founder of Koç University Nursing
Graduate School. SANERC, which was connected to American Hospital in its
foundation, was connected to Koç University Nursing Graduate School in 2004.
Arsel is also one of the founder members of TEGV.
Large companies she owns or she is a
partner of can be lines up as Koç Holding, Arçelik, Opet, TÜPRAŞ, Yapı Kredi Bankası, TOFAŞ, Otokar, Aygaz, Vehbi Koç Foundation, Rahmi M.
Koç Museum, Çengelhan Rahmi Koç Museum, Koç University, Sadberk Hanım Museum,
Koç Private College. Institutions she contributed to are Vehbi Koç
Göz Bankası (1963), İstanbul University Faculty of Medicine Institute of
Cardiology (1964), Turkish Education Foundation (1967), Turkish Foundation of
Family Health and Planning (1985), Pera Museum (2005).
Foundation, whose Chairwoman of Executive board is Semahat Arsel, is the first
large private foundation of Turkey, opened by Vehbi Koç on the 17th
of January 1969. Vehbi Koç foundation conducted activities in
basic requirements of life which are education, health and culture, since its
foundation it has been providing services to numerous beneficent persons. After
the establishment of the foundation it built numerous schools, dormitories,
libraries and health institutions such as clinics thanks to its donations and
contributions and transferred these to public institutions for their operation.
It gave scholarships to thousands of skilled young people who were in need of
financial support in order to create an equality of opportunities.
beginning of 1980s, the administration of the foundation started to work
intensively in order to realize well-resourced and well-organized projects in
fields in which it operates. The first private museum of Turkey Sadberk Hanım
Museum and Koç Private College were built. Later Believing in integrity in
education, the preparations for Koç University started in 1988
accordingly. The university, which was the first foundation university in its
kind, started its educational activities in a very short time such as five
years, in 1993.
Other cultural institutions of the foundation, which was not contented with
these, are Vehbi Koç and Ankara Research Centers, Suna-İnan Kıraç Akdeniz
Civilizations Research Institute. Kaleiçi Museum, which was opened in 2000,
became the second private museum of the foundation.
foundation, which integrated American Hospital that it had been supporting for
long years, started a very large investment to open an exemplary health
complex. The foundation started to support the profession of nursing, for which
it gave importance, with two of its institutions: American Hospital, Private
Amiral Bristol Health Vocational High-School which was transferred to the
foundation with American Hospital and Semahat Arsel Nursing Education and
Research Center which aimed to provide a multifaceted knowledge for nurses,
were established. The foundation started within the celebrations of the 75th
anniversary of the republic Primary Schools Project which was a turning point
in the history of Vehbi Koç Foundation. The foundation also built 13 primary
schools in various corners of Turkey in order to support 8-years uninterrupted
education. Vehbi Koç Foundation brought a new dimension to the tradition of
building school and transferring them to the Ministry of National Education and
it internalized the perspective of “Build, transfer, look after”.