"I can only hope to live up to his legacy and support my PhD students like that which I have enjoyed from Dr. Pitt at SFU."

Former PhD Student, Kirk Plangger

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2020 Award for Excellence in Supervision: Leyland Pitt

February 07, 2022

Professor of Marketing, Dr. Leyland Pitt, has an impressive supervision record within the Beedie School of Business. Known for supervising multiple PhD students at a time, his excellence in supervision is reflected in the success of his students.

“Leyland stands out for his consistent supervision of students, and for their success while in the program, their placement, and their success in their future academic careers,” says Eric Werker, William Saywell Professor in the Beedie School of Business.

Pitt’s students attribute many of their successes to Pitt’s mentorship. An accomplished scholar himself, he encourages his students to approach their research with the same curiosity and intellectual rigour.

“This level of productivity is not uncommon with Dr. Pitt’s students. With his training and vast network of successful researchers, Dr. Pitt creates opportunities for his students to explore the variety of their research interests and work on a number of different projects,” says Emily Treen, current PhD student in the Beedie School of Business.

“Yet, for me, none of this research productivity would be possible without the sense of confidence he engenders in his students. It is the unwavering support and respect for his students that allows us to push beyond the limits of our perceived capabilities and build the necessary skills to succeed in our field.”

Leyland’s supervision has also shaped many students’ career as educators, recommending ways to incorporate best practices into their teaching and serving as an outstanding example of mentorship.

“At King’s College, I have four PhD students that I try to support in similar ways that I learned from Dr. Pitt,” says Kirk Plangger, a former student of Pitt’s. “I can only hope to live up to his legacy and support my PhD students like that which I have enjoyed from Dr. Pitt at SFU.”

Despite his many commitments, Pitt’s generosity and quality of supervision has never wavered. PhD graduates recall Pitt’s efforts to make time for his students, always ready to provide friendly and timely assistance. His vast amount of experience and eagerness to help students has made Pitt an exceptional supervisor to many graduate students.

The 2022 Dean of Graduate Studies Awards for Excellence are open for nominations. Deadline for nominations is March 25, 2022.