Michael Moore starts scholarship for students who defy university's administration

Michael Moore has established a scholarship for students who defy the administration of a California university that canceled a talk by the U.S. filmmaker last year.

The Michael Moore Freedom of Speech Scholarship will award US$2,500 (Ђ1,900) each to two students at California State University, San Marcos, "who have done the most to fight for issues of student rights by standing up to the administration," according to a statement Wednesday.

The first of the annual scholarships will be awarded in the 2005-2006 academic year. Winners will be announced in June.

Cal State San Marcos President Karen Hynes revoked Moore's invitation to speak on campus last year because she said the school was prohibited from spending state money on partisan political activity. Hynes said she did not believe there would be enough time to find a speaker whose opinions could balance Moore's liberal views.

A call to Hynes' office was referred to Cal State San Marcos spokesman Rick Moore, who said he did not want to discuss the merits of a scholarship that encourages students to stand up to administrators.

"Mr. Moore has the right to do whatever he wishes to do, and we're glad to see another scholarship available to students who go to our school," he said.

In October 2004, the "Fahrenheit 9/11" filmmaker spoke to 10,000 people off campus at the Del Mar Fairgrounds, where he announced his plans to start what he called a "hellraiser" scholarship.

Associated Press

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