Doha, 17th August, 2017 – At the official PUE Forum inaugurating the new academic year 2017/18, special PUE awards were presented to deserving individuals and teams from PUE-administered schools and institutions. The Academic Bridge Program (ABP) was proud to have two nomination finalists, Ms Alison Davies, and Mr Mutassim Awadallah, nominated for the Outstanding Teacher and Best Education Initiative awards respectively.
Ms Davies, faculty member at the English Department, teaches courses in Academic Communication and Academic Composition to top level ABP students. She was delighted to have been nominated, but stressed the collegial nature of her teaching, “We are all outstanding teachers here, at the ABP”, she said. “I work with a superb team of colleagues, talented, experienced, and collaborative. I am grateful to be working in such a stimulating environment.” When asked why she thought she had been nominated for the award, Ms Davies explained that teaching communication skills has a “profound and positive effect on students” who learn to speak in public and participate in academic discussions with confidence and fluency. “For some of them, it’s life-changing”, she said, describing how they end up with a good set of communication tools that can be used elsewhere, thus benefitting them in other ABP courses and noticeable to her colleagues teaching those courses. “The nomination makes me very proud but also incredibly thankful to the people I work with. They make me want to be a better teacher”, Ms Davies remarked.
Mr Mutassim Awadallah was nominated for the extraordinary effort he had put into creating a sophisticated and comprehensive online system for monitoring ABP students’ academic progress. According to Mr Awadallah, the Student Support System is designed to benefit both teachers and students. Easy to operate, it allows teachers to track students, record individual tutoring sessions, check students’ schedules and attendance, and report any issues regarding their performance. What are the system’s benefits for ABP students? “The students are the main reason why the system was created in the first place”, he explained. “It is a fast and efficient tool to monitor how students are doing in the Program, and to immediately flag any potential academic problems they might encounter”. In this way, a student’s teacher and advisor can work as a team to offer most effective help, tailor-made to suit the student’s specific needs. Mr Awadallah emphasized that the system’s main benefit for students lies in an early detection of problems, which facilitates prompt action and support. He also said he was very happy to have been recognized by the ABP, PUE and QF for his work on this project. “Students are at the heart of all our efforts here in Qatar Foundation”, he added.