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Funded by the kind donations of LSE alumni and friends to seek out the journalistic talent of tomorrow.

Bernard Levin Award for Student Journalism


The Bernard Levin Award for Student Journalism

Introducing the Bernard Levin Award for Student Journalism graduate of the London School of Economics, Bernard Levin, one of the greatest and most admired journalists the School has produced.

David Kingsley O.B.E. and Elizabeth Anderson, working with other interested friends of Bernard, LSE alumni and the LSE Students’ Union.

About Bernard Levin Bernard Levin CBE BSc (Econ), a student and graduate of the LSE (19481952) and an Honorary Fellow of the School, was a brilliant debater in the Students’ Union, a talented performer in the annual Student Revue, and a contributor to the Clare Market Review magazine and Beaver newspaper while he studied at LSE. It was as a student at LSE that he developed his taste for classical music and the close proximity of the LSE to the Royal Opera House and London’s plethora of concert halls and theatres. It was Bernard’s intellectual and stinging commentaries on politics and political His writing was founded on an instinctive championing of human rights, for the underdog and the vulnerable, as well as a distrust of anyone abusing power. Bernard’s mentors at the LSE were the Professor of Political Science, Harold Laski, and Professor of Philosophy, Sir Karl Popper. Bernard’s wider popularity – some might say notoriety – grew as television became established as a prime popular medium. He participated in many Alzheimer’s through the last years of his life. In November 2005 Bernard was selected by his peers as one of Britain’s

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Briefing Pack//

receive £500, a two week internship with the Huffington Post, dinner and tickets to the theatre for two, a copy of Bernard’s works and a framed certificate Highly commended entries will each receive a copy of Bernard Levin’s work highly commended articles will be published in a booklet that will be distributed to the media, LSE academics, LSE alumni and donors to the A ward. All entrants will also be invited to a reception to celebrate the competition. All entries will be featured on the LSE Students’ Union website at

Entering the Award • to a LSE student of the intellectual, cultural, political, professional, business, media, or entertainment life surrounding the School’s campus in the heart mind the merits of Bernard Levin’s own writing.

Entry procedure

Entries will be received from now until Friday 21st March. To enter, submit your ar ticle and an online entr y form at . LA Please use Microsoft Word formats and avoid PDFs.

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The Bernard Levin Award for Student Journalism Page. 03

Judging the Award

A panel of judges composed of Bernard’s friends, journalists and media experts will collectively agree on the winner and those to be highly commended.

• competition on Thursday 8th May on Roof Terrace of the Saw Swee Hock Students’ Centre.

Helping hands •

How To Improve Your Chances

by Bel Mooney, writer and journalist

1. 2. Do some research and learn from Levin. If you Google Bernard’s name journalist should also get hold of one of his collections of journalism (try eBay or Amazon) and use it as a manual.

3. Remember that the on a line.

has to haul the reader in like a

4. Also remember that it’s better to end with a bang than a whimper. 5. Planning an article carefully is as wise as setting out on a cross-country hike with a good map. It means you won’t get lost in the middle.


like it, but editors today favour crisp simplicity of style. Too many adverbs and adjectives are like too much makeup on a woman - hiding the essential truth of the subject. Use just enough to enhance.

Briefing Pack//

Last year’s winner Year Winner To give you an idea of what it takes to win, and how one might interpret the brief, here is the winning article from last year.

Stairway to Heaven by Fionn Shiner

Considering that all the conventional benefits of LSE, such as the cultural diversity, academic ambition and high-powered debate will be covered by some other intelligent, well-read, serious student; I have decided to celebrate another tangible benefit of LSE. This factor gives us pulsating thigh muscles, and calves like chicken breasts; this factor of LSE provides us with a much needed cardio-vascular workout; it leaves us breathless, and probably sweaty if we’re being honest with ourselves. The factor that I wish to celebrate and revel in, is one that has single-handedly left me with legs so toned, muscled and rippling with hidden strength that Usain Bolt would be deadly jealous of them. Jealous enough to try to kill me. Hence the use of the adverb ‘deadly’ (analytical!). Anyway, what I wish to celebrate is the stairs. On a Monday, I have a lecture in Clement House, seventh floor. Did you get that? Seventh floor. That’s one, two, three, four, five, six, seven flights of stairs. Of course, as is becoming of LSE, the lifts are always full with eager attendees of classes, lectures and strip teases, so I have to scuttle up all seven flights of stairs like a little squirrel scurrying up a big old tree. Except this little squirrel has a rucksack on his back, weighing him down, and in this rucksack is a laptop, laptop charger, pad of paper, numerous pens and 9 tangerines. He likes tangerines. A lot. On a Tuesday I have a lecture. Guess where? Clement House. Guess what floor? Sixth. Did you get that? Sixth floor. That’s one, two, three, four, five, six flights of stairs. Of course, as is becoming of LSE, the lifts are always full of eager attendees of……well you get the bloody picture. Essentially, it’s very tiring work. Now, I realise that this might seem like I am moaning, complaining and stamping my feet at this nefarious punishment LSE has dished out to me. Well, I’m not. I’m celebrating it. You should see my legs. That’s all I can say. On a Thursday I have a class in Tower 1. The Towers are LSE’s answer to the towers of Isengard and Mordor. If you get lost in the labyrinth of passages, rooms and stairs, well expect to return, but just not as the same person. They do things down there in those towers. Strange, dark things. Anyway, I digress. On Thursday I have a class in Tower 1, fourth floor. Did you get that? Fourth floor. That’s one, two, three, four flights of steps.

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The Bernard Levin Award for Student Journalism

But I’m not complaining, I promise, I’m celebrating. Not only does LSE provide internationally renowned academic prestige, but it also inadvertently keeps us in shape. I personally think it’s a ploy by the directors. A very cunning ploy. They have our best interests at heart, and they know how much time we spend reading, studying and writing, and how little time we spend running, walking and playing, so they’ve subtly introduced a subversive way to keep the students in tip-top condition. And if they do need to unleash a small army of well-read, pseudo-intellectual, would-be-world-leaders, well they can, and what’s more, the army will be physically refined. Now, I move on to what is undeniably the finest staircase on campus, and I’m going to celebrate it like there is no tomorrow. This staircase; oh, it’s something special. Is it a set stairs or are they steps? Is it a set of stairs or just a series of small ledges? Is it a set of stairs or a form of punishment, meant to eradicate any hope one had of wondering effortlessly around the library looking cool, disengaged and generally superior? Because, this staircase I have in mind, drags us all down to the same level. We all struggle up them: one step…and a half. One step…and a half. One step…and a half. Repeat ad nauseam. It’s even worse when you’re trying to overtake someone. One step…really fast little half step. Oh, you’ve banged your shin, or even worse, stumbled slightly to the poorly concealed amusement of onlookers. If it’s not already clear to you, the staircase I am rejoicing is the one that snakes up through the heart of the library (otherwise known colloquially as the ‘heart of darkness’). The spiral staircase of doom, broken dreams and suffering. The spiral staircase that chews you up, and spits you out again red-faced, embarrassed and disgraced. These stairs have a peculiar design, and it’s definitely to keep us all fit. Not close enough together for one allencompassing stride, but not far enough for two conventional strides, instead what one has to employ is some sort of hybrid one stride, two stride, shuffling dance. If you ever want to look like an epileptic horse then jog up these stairs. Or down them , it’s totally up to you. These stairs are fantastic, and I really would like to celebrate how great they are for me on a personal level. Before I came to LSE I only knew about the classic one-stride/two-stride choice, but now I have another weapon in my arsenal when it comes to stairs. I have the one-and-a-half stride awkward shuffle, method. LSE is already really good for meeting attractive people of the opposite sex, but these stairs really just take things up a level because one can’t help but drip with sexiness when clambering up and down these stairs in the middle of our ethereal, liberating, library. Now, this may seem like I’m complaining, moaning and stamping my feet about assorted flights of stairs in the LSE. I’m not; I’m celebrating them and what benefits they’ve had for my personal health. And I do absolutely love going to the LSE as an institution, I genuinely do.

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Briefing Pack//

On Quo ting Shak espear e by Ber nard Le vin

If you cannot understand my argument, and declare: It’s Greek to me, you are quoting Shakespeare; if you claim to be more sinned against than sinning, you are quoting Shakespeare; if you recall your salad days, you are quoting Shakespeare; if you act more in sorrow than in anger; if your wish is father to the thought; if your lost property has vanished into thin air, you are quoting Shakespeare; if you have ever green-eyed jealousy, if you refused to budge an inch have played fast and loose, if you have been tongue-tied, a tower of strength, hoodwinked or in a pickle, if you have knitted your brows, made a virtue of necessity, insisted on fair play, slept not one wink, stood on ceremony, danced attendance (on your lord and master), laughed yourself into stitches, had short shrift, cold comfort or too much of a good thing, if you have seen better days or lived in a fool’s paradise - why, be that as it may, the more fool you, for it is a foregone conclusion that you are (as good luck would have it) quoting Shakespeare; if you think it is early days and clear out bag and baggage, if you think it is high time and that that is the long and short of it, if you believe that the game is up and that truth will out even if it involves your , if you lie low till the crack of doom because you suspect foul play, if you have your teeth set on edge (at one fell swoop) without rhyme or reason, then - to give the devil his due - if the truth were known (for surely you have a tongue in your head) you are quoting Shakespeare; even if you bid me good riddance and send me packing, if you wish I was dead as a door-nail, if you think I am an eyesore, a laughing stock, the devil incarnate, a stony-hearted villain, bloody-minded or a blinking idiot, then - by Jove! O Lord! Tut tut! For goodness’ sake! What the dickens! But me no buts! - it is all one to me, for you are quoting Shakespeare.

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Bernard Levin Award Booklet 2014  
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