The CEU Department of Philosophy has introduced a donation-funded prize in memory of its late student, Raza Khan, who died in March 2020. The aim behind the prize is to commemorate Khan as a friend, a student and a philosopher. Given Raza's deep interest in the philosophy of mind and its relation to neuroscience, the department has decided to award a prize every year for the best student work in the field.
"We came to know Raza through philosophy, and he was our colleague in the pursuit of wisdom – which after all is the main goal of philosophy," explains CEU Professor and Head of the Philosophy Department Katalin Farkas. "We feel that the appreciation of student work in the area that formed the primary focus of his interest is the best way to honor his memory, and to remember him year by year."
Khan was a talented student in the second year of his master's program. With many good friends at CEU, he was loved and respected, and his untimely passing devastated the CEU community. Individual donors – colleagues, alumni, and friends – who wish to contribute to the prize may do so online via the prize giving page or by check, wire transfer or stock.
"We want the prize to go to a student who is as deeply interested in philosophical questions about the mind as Raza was," notes Farkas. The department is looking for work that is clearly written, well-researched and contains good use of argument and empirical material (where appropriate). According to Farkas, these were the qualities that characterized Khan's work.
The Philosophy Department will launch the first call for applications in 2021 and plans to open the call annually. The philosophy of mind and the philosophy of psychology in relation to the prize are understood broadly, to include work regarding phenomenology and the philosophies of neuroscience, psychiatry and psychoanalysis, for example.
All MA and PhD students in good standing in the CEU Philosophy Department are eligible to be considered for the prize, which will be determined by a committee of three members of the Philosophy Department. Those eligible may submit a piece of their own work, or their work may be nominated for the prize by a faculty member in the department. Nominated papers should be sent to Philosophy Department Coordinator Kriszta Biber by June 1, 2021.
The establishment of the Raza Khan Prize is one of several funds at CEU honoring the lives of students who have been lost. The Mihaela Tanasa Memorial Fund has enabled student research in Medieval Studies since 1999 and the Lydia Press Memorial Fund supports fieldwork by Environmental Science students.
To contribute to the Raza Khan Prize through a donation, which will support a talented student in the philosophy of mind, please visit CEU Giving.