A number of previously independent University of Sydney Union (USU) programs, including the Verge Awards, Hermes Literary Journal, Band Competition and DJ Competition, will this year be combined into a new USU Creative Awards.
Hermes, which has been published since 1886 and is Australia’s oldest literary Journal, will now function as the printed catalogue for the Awards.
The 2017 USU Creative Programs Guidelines states that “all eligible entries submitted via The USU Creative Awards will be reviewed and considered for publishing in Hermes … ” and that “shortlisted works and Award winners will be automatically published.”
Student editors will still be appointed to oversee the catalogue and will have access to all submitted works. In a departure from tradition, the catalogue will not be themed.
USU President Michael Rees says that the changes will increase student participation and access to Hermes.
“We believe the changes are not a re-purposing, but a chance to further enhance Hermes’ reputation and bring it to more people,” he said.
According to Rees, in 2016 there was a 40 per cent overlap between Hermes submissions and Verge Awards entries.
“Taking this on board, we have streamlined the entry and submission process so that students can now put forward works for consideration for Hermes and the USU Creative Awards on one form,” he said.
Submissions for the USU Creative Awards close on the 30 January for written works and the 7 August for art and music.