Dr. Fayyaz Vellani wins international award

Dr. Fayyaz Vellani, lecturer in Critical Writing, has received the prestigious International Award for Excellence for Volume 15 of the Diversity in Organizations, Communities & Nations Collections.

Dr. Vellani’s article, “Engagement with Place: Cairo as Classroom,” was selected from among the 10 highest-ranking papers to emerge from peer reviews. He accepted the award at the 16th International Conference on Diversity in Organizations, Communities & Nations, held in Grenada, Spain, over the summer.

Dr. Vellani observed graduate students conducting historical research in Cairo in 2011 and 2012, during which the Arab Spring uprisings were taking place. What initially sparked his interest in the topic, Dr. Vellani says, was what he perceived as “discrepancies between media representations of events and my own firsthand experience of the city.”

His study concludes that “the city’s people, places and cultural practices influence contemporary and historical events, and not simply the other way around.”

Dr. Vellani, who joined the Critical Writing faculty in 2006, teaches seminars in Environmental Studies, Urban Studies, and the Craft of Prose. A London native, he earned his Ph.D. at the University of London.