Dr. Hejar Oncel was born and raised in Northern Kurdistan. He is a graduate of Galatasaray High School, whose alumni include founding fathers of nations born after the collapse of the Ottoman Empire. After receiving a B.S. degree in mechanical engineering from the Bogaziçi University (first American higher education institution founded outside the US), he moved to the USA and earned a Ph.D. Degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Houston and an MBA degree from the UC Berkeley.
He grew up in a politically active environment that gave him the opportunity to observe the evolution of the three main pillars of the Kurdish freedom movement: Democratic nation, absolute gender equality, and ecological society.
He speaks Kurdish, French, English, Italian, Turkish, and a bit of Norwegian and Russian. He is married and currently working as a management consultant.