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English student receives global acclaim for essay

Published: 28 September 2017
Oliver Twist asking for more
James Mahoney's 'Uncaptioned Headpiece for Chapter One', 1871.

3rd-year English student Emma Hills has been Highly Commended in the international Undergraduate Awards Programme 2017.  Her essay, 'The Confessions of an Orphan' was chosen from 6,432 submissions by students in 299 institutions across 47 countries.  Judges ranked it in the top 10% of all submissions, and it was chosen to go forward to the Global Winner category.

Emma explains that the essay was inspired by her second-year module, The 19th-Century Novel, taught by Justine Pizzo, Mary Hammond and Matt Kerr. 'I noticed a recurring theme -  the figure of the absent mother -  in many of the novels we were studying and my ideas sprung from that'. Emma was delighted to hear the news, and hopes it will inspire other Southampton students to enter: 'I never expected to be highly commend - I just felt I couldn't lose anything by trying'.

The awards ask students to submit work they've completed during their degree. The full shortlist can be seen here.

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