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Professor Katie Willis wins Doctoral Supervisor of the Year Award

Professor Katie Willis wins Doctoral Supervisor of the Year Award

  • Date20 May 2021

We are delighted to announce that the winner of Royal Holloway’s Doctoral Supervisor of the Year Award is Professor Katie Willis.

Katie Willis supervisor award 2021 May

People in the picture are (L to R): Tat In (Dennis) Tam, Yunting (Tina) Qi, Tianfeng (Clarisse) Liu, Katie Willis, Mina Nakai

The Judging panel, consisting of three student representatives, last year’s Supervisor of the Year Award winner and the six Directors of Postgraduate Education (who were not allowed to comment on or rank any nominee from their own School), were unanimous in their voting for Professor Willis as the 2021 winner.

Katie has supervised some 28 students to completion and her testimonials are excellent. She is particularly supportive of international students and those for whom English is not their first language. Katie takes a keen interest in wider doctoral training and has an excellent track record of recruiting candidates and winning funding for them. She typically exceeds her students’ expectations, models good practice and a strong work ethic, has a holistic approach to supporting her students and offers special assistance to support students in difficulty. Katie has, for example, adopted various strategies to assist students who are finding writing difficult. Particularly impressive was mention of her travelling to Macau and Shanghai and finding time to advise on and support a student’s field work. She runs mock interviews for students applying for academic positions and has even organised an international conference to raise her students’ profiles. Former doctoral students have gone onto a wide range of relevant careers, including international development and NGOs.

Professor Willis now has the chance to go forward as the Royal Holloway nominee for the 2021 Times Higher Education Outstanding Supervisor of the Year Award.

Congratulations Katie!

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