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Matilda Award

Convocation, in conjunction with the UWA Student Guild, makes an annual presentation of a cultural award known as the UWA Convocation Matilda Award for Cultural Excellence.

This award recognises excellence and outstanding achievement in cultural pursuits such as:

  • Music - classical, rock, popular, jazz and any other form of music.
  • Literature - fiction, non-fiction, short stories, prose, poetry, and any other form of literature.
  • Public speaking - debating, specialised expertise in a foreign language, and any other form of public speaking.
  • Dance - ballet, contemporary, ballroom and all facets such as choreography, production and performance.
  • Visual arts - painting, graphic design, textiles, sculpture and any other form of visual art.
  • Drama - theatre, television, street theatre, production and any other form of drama. 

The award consists of a $1,000 cash prize and a framed certificate to an individual or group.


Applications open 1st April 2024.
Applications close 4th June 2024.

2024 Regulations

2024 Application form


Apply by completing application form and  emailing in one combined pdf maximum 2.8GB document with your name and student number as the title to [email protected]

Roll of Honour

  • 2023 Winners

    Heather Blakely

    Heather has made a significant contribution as a younger scholar, public speaker, reviewer and publishing industry professional, to our understanding of the manifold educational possibilities and cultural impacts of the gaming industry. Her work is cross-cutting, demonstrating how various independently produced games interact with literary and cultural narrative. Her work has reshaped our understanding of gender roles.
  • 2022 Winners

    Paul Boye

    Paul Boye in the category of Visual Arts and Design.

    Paul Boye is an arts writer and educator working living in Boorloo/Perth. They are currently working on a PhD at UWA School of Design, where they also teach sessionally. They are a co-director at Cool Change Contemporary, an artist-run gallery in the Perth CBD. Their research has been presented across the world, at conferences such as ANAT Spectra and ISEA. They have curated for Perth Festival and Audible Edge. As a writer, Paul has published with un Magazine and Running Dog, was involved in the Perth Festival Visual Arts Writing Group, and was appointed the inaugural unExtended Editor in Residence. As an artist, Paul as produced performance work, and exhibited at Perth Institute of Contemporary Art and Cullity Gallery.

  • 2021 Winners

    James Dingley

    James has created a unique video series on his YouTube channel Atomic Frontier which focuses on science. The series has since grown to 17 episodes featuring concepts such as Rottnest Island’s Renewable Energy grid, Esperance’s Pink Lake, Carnarvon’s NASA Tracking Station, and Australia’s Cold War Submarines. It has also spawned two additional series totaling 34 films and several podcasts. One of the most recent episodes, a discussion of UWA’s Driverless Bus project, gained more than 300,000 views in its first month. The videos on Atomic Frontier have been viewed by people from 133 countries, which allows James to share various cultural and scientific insights of Australia to the world.

  • 2020 Winners


    In the Category of Public Speaking TEDxUWA is a student-run, non-profit organisation based at The University of Western Australia (UWA). The organisation aims to bring the spirit of TED to the UWA campus community and beyond by organising events that are focused on the power of ideas to change and follow the motto of "Ideas Worth Spreading". TEDxUWA organises up to five public speaking idea-focused events. The "TEDxUWASalon" events, which attract 50 to 100 attendees and the "TEDxUWA" conferences attract 400 attendees. Events are purposefully given a theme so attendees are able to experience a well-rounded event, appealing to the different values and interests in the community. This year, due to COVID19 restrictions, TEDxUWA conducted virtual events quickly and seamlessly. TEDxUWA is a unique platform for UWA students, staff, alumni, and the greater public to share their ideas and stories, showcase UWA’s research and talents, and integrate them into the community to create a more cohesive and positive intellectual environment.

  • 2019 winners

    The Western Australian Debating League

    The Western Australian Debating League, in the Category of Public Speaking
    The Western Australian Debating League is the leading debating organisation in Western Australia, and the state’s sole affiliate of the Australian Debating Federation. We host the largest high school debating competition in Western Australia, as well as other competitions and programs. WADL is also responsible for selecting the West Australian State Debating Team, which represents WA at the annual National Schools Debating Championship. WADL aspires to ensure all students have meaningful access to debating, that encourages critical thinking, fosters engagement with global issues, and equips students with lifelong skills and the confidence to pursue their potential. We aim to do this by ensuring all WA school students have access to challenging debating competitions, high quality resources, and purpose-built development opportunities. The funds provided by UWA Convocation will go towards expanding debating opportunities to students who may experience financial hardship or geographical isolation, including towns such as Alice Springs, Albany, Bunbury-Margaret River and Christmas Island. This will take the form of public speaking workshops, practice debates, seminars and the creation of an inter-school debating competition run by professionally trained adjudicators.

  • 2018 Winners

    Rafeif Ismail

    Bryant Stokes Matilda Award for Cultural Excellence, in the Category of Literature
    "As an emerging multilingual writer, I am committed to creating works which explore the rich diversity of this world, with the hope that stories everyone can relate to will be available across all mediums. I am honoured to be a recipient of the 2018 Bryant Stokes Matilda Award for Cultural Excellence. Storytelling, in whatever form it takes is an act of courage, we make ourselves vulnerable yet through that vulnerability we open pathways for empathy, understanding, further conversations and change. This award will give me the support to continue developing my practice, which will be instrumental to me in completing first full-length novel. I balance my creative practice with studying a Bachelor of Science (Neuroscience and Linguistics) and look forward to seeing all the ways in which my academic studies and creative practices can intersect."

  • 2016 Winners

    UWA French Club

    Bryant Stokes Matilda Award for Cultural Excellence winner is UWA French Club, in the category of Drama.
    The UWA French Club has been working tirelessly to promote French Culture not only within the University community, but to a wider audience around Perth.

    One of the highlights of their cultural involvement is a renowned yearly theatre production attracting a full house over 2 days at the Dolphin Theatre.
    The UWA French Club tackled challenging but poignant plays.  In March 2015, they performed Lysistrata and this year, in March 2016, Antigone. Both productions were a great success. This year they added to their performance a matinee for high school students, which was well-received.

    The theatre production is a mammoth task involving play adaptation, subtitles, stage design, auditions, costumes, venues, backstage, programmes, marketing, music etc.

    In addition to their annual play, the UWA French Club organises many cultural events and social activities for the wider community.

  • 2017 Winners


    Bryant Stokes Matilda Award for Cultural Excellence winner is CERAE, In the Category of Literature.
    Cerae: An Australasian Journal of Medieval & Early Modern Studies is a peer-reviewed open-access journal published online that is administered centrally from the University of Western Australia. Over the years since its inception in 2013 it has grown and expanded significantly, so that its network of committee members, contributors and reviewers is now spread across Australia and the world. It offers a space for graduate students and early career researchers to promote their academic work and interests, while our volunteers gain valuable experience in operating an academic journal. We are committed to exploring the possibilities presented by the digital humanities, and to advancing the reputation and reach of medieval and early modern scholars from the Australasian region.

  • 2015 Winners

    Bronwyn Milkins (Public Speaking).

    Christopher Burch (Public Speaking).

    Robert Wood (Certificate of Commendation - the Category of Literature and Creative Writing, in his field of Poetry).

    W.A. Medical Students Orchestra   (Certificate of Commendation - the Category of Music).

  • 2014 Winners

    Michael Grebla (Music).

  • 2013 Winners

    Christina Davies (Visual Arts).

  • 2012 Winners

    Jessica Dunn (Dance).

  • 2011 Winners

    Vivienne Glance (Literature).

  • 2010 Winners

    Rebecca Giggs (Literature).

    Izaak Lim and Nicholas Peter Maclaine (Drama).

  • 2009 Winners

    Hayden Teo (Public Speaking).

  • 2007 Winners

    Kim Scott (Literature).

  • 2006 Winners

    Ivanna Mayorenko (Dance).

  • 2005 Winners

    The Limina Editorial Collective (Literature).

  • 2004 Winners

    The Sartory String Quartet (Music).

  • 2003 Winners

    The UWA Jessup Moot Team (Public Speaking).

  • 2002 Winners

    Emily Reilly (Dance).

    The UWA Jessup Moot Team (Public Speaking).

  • 2001 Winners

    The Limina Editorial Collective (Literature).

  • 2000 Winners

    Kathleen Foley (Public Speaking).

  • 1997 Winners

    The UWA Italian Dramatic Society (Drama).

    Sari Maree Hosie (Literature).

    The UWA Jessup Moot Team (Public Speaking).

  • 1996 Winners

    The Editors of Under the Table (Literature).

    Philip Andrew Senior (Public Speaking).

  • 1995 Winners

    Martin Heine (Visual Arts).

  • 1994 Winners

    Georgia Richter (Literature).

    Catherine Osborn (Dance).

    Richard John (Music).

  • 1993 Winners

    Scott Cameron (Music).

    Peter Stafford (Visual Arts).

    Antonia Casella (Literature).

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