Dr. David Gurevich guided the group of 16 undergraduate students of Theology from Åbo Akademi University, Finland, on their course tour in Jerusalem on May 17-18, 2017. The tour led by Dr. Gurevitch had the history of Jerusalem, especially during the 1st and 2nd Temple periods, as its focus and included an introductory lecture at the lecture hall of the Swedish Theological Institute.
As the academic supervisor of the group - based on my personal experience as well as on the student feedback collected in written form - I would like to express the following as my assessment of Dr. Gurevitch’s contribution: As an archaeologist, Dr. Gurevitch is an academic expert of the highest rank in his field, the fruits of which the group was privileged to enjoy. Besides guiding the group to see the sites and artefacts, he was also able to paint a lively picture of the history of research, which I appreciate very much. He did not, however, limit himself only to his own scholarly field. Instead, from time to time, new perspectives were opened to the later phases and aspects of the history of Jerusalem. Through his pedagogical skills, he was able to make the history living for the students with relatively limited knowledge in the field. Although a professional scholar, he is able to take the various interests - and levels of knowledge - in a heterogeneous group into consideration. According to one of the student responses: “He has an extraordinary pedagogical talent to deliver his knowledge in an interesting and easy way. What I earlier had read in the books became alive under his guidance.” On his own initiative, Dr. Gurevitch also proposed of giving an introductory lecture, which several participants found very informative and helpful, as well as leading a summarizing discussion in the end of the first tour day. Afterwards he also distributed in an electronic form one of his articles touching upon one of the topics discussed during the tour. This all shows that Dr. Gurevitch has a unique vocation of leading visitors of all levels into a contact with the past.