A few hours ago, I received a piece of sad news. Prof. Aydın Uğur has passed away. Although I could not see him much in recent years, Prof. Uğur was a constant reminder of a rare good scholar that could still be found in Turkey. Many times, on many occasions, I have declared that two professors helped me stay in academia. He was one of them.
In one of my darkest hours back in 2000, when I could not get admission to Rice Anthropology yet, when I was a desperately poor MA student and lost hope of getting a position in academia, I was invited to an interview for a research assistant position in Bilgi University Media Department (where I chair now!). Aydın Uğur, who was then the founding dean of the Communication School, met me, and the interview did not last more than 10 minutes. I got the job.
I witnessed his democratic standing as an academic administrator.
I witnessed him ever alert for intellectual developments.
I witnessed him as a kind and benevolent person. May he rest in peace!
p.s. a burst of tears accompanied this writing. I am sure there will be better and more informative pieces about him soon.
update: A short interview with Aydın Uğur (made by Zeynep Merve Uygun):
Just started a Wikipedia entry for Aydın Uğur.
Bilgi University’s announcement:
Dear BİLGİ Members,
We are deeply saddened to inform you about a devastating loss.
Our beloved professor Prof. Aydın Uğur, who was with us since the establishment of our University as one of the main pillars of BİLGİ tradition, who served as Rector and Dean for long years with resilience, unfortunately, could not defeat the illness that he had been fighting for years and passed away by leaving a void in our hearts. We have a hard time expressing the extent of our sorrow as the BİLGİ family. We will try to keep his memory alive in each achievement, in every alumnus. We will never forget his contributions to our University.
The details regarding the funerary services will be shared separately.
We extend our condolences to his family, students, and the entire BİLGİ family.