George Orwell’s son Richard Blair is to present a new prize for third year undergraduates studying journalism at Brunel University London.
The university has said the first winner of the Orwell Society Award for Brunel Student of the Year will be chosen for their “brilliance” by The Orwell Society and will be awarded £100.
Blair, the patron of The Orwell Society, will be at this year’s graduation ceremony on 18 July 2018 to congratulate the winner, who will remain unknown until then.
“We wanted to introduce a new award that symbolises the very best values of journalism,” said Brunel lecturer Steve Cohen.
The university seeks to mark Orwell’s (pictured) legacy as an one of Britain’s most celebrated authors and “an accomplished essayist, journalist and critic” with the creation of the prize.
Cohen added: “George Orwell’s work stands, above all else, for truth, honesty and standing up to the establishment.”
Orwell, whose given name was Eric Blair, was also chosen as a fitting namesake for the award because of his links to nearby Hayes, west London, where he taught at the former Hawthorn High School for Boys between 1932 and 1933.
Brunel University, whose famous alumni includes award-winning Zimbabwean journalist Hopewell Rugoho-Chin’ono, is situated less three miles away from Hayes, in Kingston.
“We are looking to reward the person whose practical journalistic work embodies the spirit of what George Orwell set out to achieve,” said Cohen.
“We could think of no better figure to represent the values we try to pass on to our students.”
Picture: Wikimedia Commons