CAMBRIDGE, Mass. (March 31, 2003) — Nathan Heller, a Harvard College freshman, will investigate the effects of post-Sept. 11 legislation on Harvard University through a fellowship awarded by The Christopher J. Georges Fellowship Fund.
Heller covers federal and state legislation as a member of The Harvard Crimson staff. “Many new pieces of legislation, such as the USA Patriot Act, allow federal researchers to gather information about U.S. residents’ behavior to identify potentially malicious conduct,” Heller wrote in his project proposal. “How do these and other legislative measures change life at an international research university? How are the nation’s institutions of higher education and creative intellectualism responding to the pressure of new laws governing the movement of people and information?”
The project, to be published in The Harvard Crimson upon its completion, will provide one of the first comprehensive looks at the effect of post-Sept. 11 legislation on a university.
“All of the proposals showed a great deal of thought and concern,” said Gigi Georges, chair of the fellowship fund’s board. “When Nathan completes his work and the stories are published, we expect his work will have a significant impact on how the university views and deals with these complicated and potentially intrusive regulations.”
The fellowship covers a $2,500 award and the printing costs to publish the project in The Crimson.
Heller is a National Merit finalist from San Francisco. He was valedictorian of Lick-Wilmerding High School and editor in chief of the high school’s newspaper. He plays viola in the Harvard Orchestra.
The Christopher J. Georges Fellowship Fund was established at Harvard and is awarded annually to enable young journalists to engage in research and writing that exemplifies Chris Georges’ commitment to in-depth reporting on issues of enduring social value that document the human impact of public policy.
Chris Georges was executive editor of The Harvard Crimson and an honors graduate of Harvard College. Following graduation he joined The Wall Street Journal as a reporter. He died in 1998 at age 33 from complications related to lupus. He worked in The Journal’s Washington Bureau covering politics, economics and budget issues. His stories on the welfare system in 1997 were nominated for a Pulitzer Prize.
The fellowship is administered by the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard University. A selection committee appointed by the fellowship fund’s executive committee and the Nieman Foundation reviewed the proposals and selected the student to receive the award and carry out the project.