Planting the seed for growing good

Monday, 14 September 2020

When alumnus Lachlan King (Bachelor of Engineering (Chemical), 2004) attended a scholarship ceremony at the University for a close friend, a seed was planted: the idea that 'giving somebody else the opportunity to continue their education path’ was within his reach.

Planting The Seed For Growing Good
Cameron Manning hopes to pass on his growing knowledge of Gomeroi culture and language to his daughters and close family. Support from his Shaping Futures Scholarship is helping him succeed.

“My friend Catherine Richards (Bachelor of Engineering (Civil), 2013; Bachelor of Engineering (Environmental), 2013) was awarded a prestigious John Monash Scholarship in 2017. The experience of seeing a group of committed young scholarship recipients awarded the opportunity to do something extraordinary was life changing for me.
I was so inspired hearing about what they had done, what they planned to do and the impact a scholarship can have, I decided that supporting students was something I wanted to do.”

After graduating from the University of Newcastle, Lachlan has spent the majority of his career with Hunter Water Corporation where he is currently Manager of Wastewater Treatment Operations. On weekends, you’ll find him exploring Glenrock’s mountain bike trails and enjoying the outdoors around Newcastle, where he grew up.
Lachlan’s wish is that students from any discipline who need extra financial support can have the opportunity to fulfil their potential through a university education, so his eponymous Shaping Futures Scholarship is open to students in all faculties - allowing students to follow his path through university and into a fulfilling career.

Philanthropy is about discovering what you’re passionate about and finding a way to make that happen. Scholarships are the pathway I’ve chosen, but there are so many ways to give back."

Lachlan King

Alumnus (Bachelor of Engineering (Chemical), 2004)


For Cameron Manning, the inaugural recipient of the Lachlan King Shaping Futures Scholarship, pursuing his future means a return to the past. Cameron is studying a Bachelor of Arts majoring in Global Indigenous Studies, Sociology and Anthropology in the Faculty of Education and Arts. Cameron is a proud Gomeroi man, community worker and father of two. As a direct descendant of the Stolen Generations, he was raised without a deep understanding of his Gomeroi culture – something he wants to pass on to his own two daughters so they can better understand their heritage.

“Family is very important to me. Two generations of my family did not have the opportunity to learn about our culture. This drives me to learn as much as I can and share this knowledge with future generations,” said Cameron.

Receiving the scholarship helped me to keep going through a difficult year. I lost my job during the early stages of COVID-19 and it’s been a struggle supporting my family and continuing my studies. Knowing that a young donor like Lachlan is helping me get through means a lot. I’m so grateful for the support."

Cameron Manning
Bachelor of Arts (Global Indigenous Studies, Sociology and Anthropology) student and inaugural Lachlan King Shaping Futures Scholarship recipient

Research shows that having a family member with tertiary level education helps children with their academic achievement at school, which can open up additional paths toward further and higher education. Historically, relatively more privileged families have enjoyed the benefits of this inter-generational dynamic. Scholarships to support ‘first-in-family’ access to university help to widen this impact by providing high quality educational opportunities to a diversity of under-represented students and their families."

Professor Penny Jane Burke
Director of the Centre of Excellence for Equity in Higher Education and Global Innovation Chair of Equity.

Read more in the Gift Magazine

The University of Newcastle acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands within our footprint areas: Awabakal, Darkinjung, Biripai, Worimi, Wonnarua, and Eora Nations. We also pay respect to the wisdom of our Elders past and present.