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Murray Edwards College
University of Cambridge

Dr Evaleila Pesaran awarded the 2021 Aaron Rapport Prize

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    15 October 2021

    The Department of Politics and International Studies (POLIS) has awarded the 2021 Aaron Rapport Prize for excellent undergraduate teaching to Dr Evaleila Pesaran, Fellow in Politics and International Relations at Murray Edwards.

    Dr Evaleila PesaranIn the Department’s annual feedback survey Dr Pesaran’s teaching received superb comments, with one student observing that “I've had a lot of great supervisors at Cambridge but Evaleila is brilliant”, pointing to how “she's really encouraging and great at listening to our thoughts and eking more ideas out of us” and “her feedback on essays is also always really thorough, interesting and provocative” such that “I feel like every time I write an essay for Evaleila I know how to improve on the last”.

    Commenting on the award, which was renamed in 2020 in honour of the late Aaron Rapport, Dr Christopher Brooke, Director of Undergraduate Education in POLIS, remarked:

    It was so gratifying, after a difficult year spent largely on Zoom, to read some of the appreciative feedback that students supplied about their supervisors.

    When announcing the Rapport Prize to the Department, he added that there should be Honourable Mentions for two other colleagues, Mr Ian Shields and Dr Devon Curtis, who had terrific feedback for, especially, their contributions to POL3 and POL16 respectively, but it was the consistency of Dr Pesaran’s feedback across both Part I and Part II courses, whether teaching general introductory papers or her specialism on the Middle East, that ultimately scooped her the prize.

    On receiving the news, Dr Pesaran said:

    I feel very honoured to receive this prize, and I am moved by its association with Aaron and his wonderful teaching—I thoroughly enjoy teaching our brilliant students, and I truly do learn from them as much as they learn from me. That's what's so wonderful about the Cambridge supervision system.