The University of Newcastle, Australia


2020 scholarship recipients

Academic Excellence scholars

Newcastle, NSW
Bachelor of Science (Advanced) Scholarship type: Academic Excellence

Anna hopes to combine her love of nature and science in her future career as a science communicator. She’s an active school and community leader, with a passion for fostering the curiosity and creativity of young minds. Anna volunteers at the Newcastle Art Gallery and helps to promote science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) in schools. Anna has been inspired by Sir David Attenborough’s dedication to investigating and showcasing how human and environmental factors are impacting animal habitats around the world. Like Attenborough, Anna hopes to use her Bachelor of Science to highlight global issues and work to implement effective solutions to protect the environment.

Sydney, NSW
Bachelor of Biomedical Science Scholarship Category: Academic Excellence

A volunteer project working with the Suma Eye Foundation in Indonesia fuelled Heidi’s desire to become a doctor. The project saw Heidi work alongside surgeons, optometrists and nurses to deliver much needed eye care – including 1,200 pairs of glasses – to remote villages. It built on her experience as a volunteer school leader, guiding her cohort to enact positive change on issues like mental health awareness and climate change. After completing her Bachelor of Biomedical Science, she hopes to work in the field of Indigenous health and participate in aid projects globally to ensure all people have equitable access to medical treatment. At home, Heidi is a volunteer lifeguard and has trained beginner swim groups in water safety in support of cancer research and the Can Too Foundation.

Adelaide, SA
Bachelor of Mathematics / Bachelor of Science Scholarship Category: Academic Excellence

Promoting sustainability has always been a priority for Michela. A budding environmentalist in primary school, she extended her reach at high school, starting a sustainability group and designing a recycling education program for all commencing students. She was also a regular volunteer with the Youth Environment Council and Adelaide Youth At The Zoo, working on conservation projects. Attracted to field work and research, Michela worked alongside University of Newcastle researchers in the Earth Watch Vanishing Frogs student challenge in 2018. Studying a Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Mathematics will further her ability to turn her passions into a career.

Macquarie Hills, NSW
Bachelor of Pharmacy (Honours) / Diploma in Languages Scholarship Category: Academic Excellence

Roshaun appreciates the role of leaders at every level of society and is clear how individuals and community groups can effect change towards a larger, more meaningful global impact. Through this understanding Roshaun strives as a passionate advocate for cultural assimilation and justice. This ideology has driven him to be active in various community groups, including the Hunter Malayalee Samajam, a non-profit, non-religious community cultural organisation where he serves as Youth Club Coordinator. Roshaun has also been working with his local council to increase participation in the Return and Earn recycling scheme as well as many other projects. After completing his degree in Pharmacy, Roshaun is looking forward to studying Medicine and using his skills to take on another vital role as advisor in his community and to nurturing the future leaders of tomorrow.

North Rothbury, NSW
Bachelor of Education (Secondary) Scholarship Category: Academic Excellence
Enabling Pathway: Open Foundation

Samantha knows the difference a good teacher can make. Growing up in the Hunter Valley, her teachers inspired her to value education. Now an aspiring high school teacher herself, Samantha hopes to use her Bachelor of Education (Secondary) to empower her students to become deep thinkers who aren’t afraid to tackle difficult concepts. This is something she practices at home with her own three children – teaching them to be accountable and responsible through their everyday actions. Returning to study through Open Foundation, Samantha is determined to protect the right of every child to experience education free from discrimination, with equitable access to resources, support and opportunities.

Lake Macquarie, NSW
Bachelor of Development Studies / Bachelor of Laws (Honours) Scholarship Category: Academic Excellence
Enabling Pathway: Newstep

Sarah’s ambition is to provide a voice to those who are not well positioned to speak up for themselves. With a desire to become a human rights lawyer, she hopes to advocate for sex workers – creating a better future for anyone susceptible to being trafficked in Australia or across the world. In 2018, she represented Columbia in a mock UN Assembly negotiation for Hunter Region schools, sparking her commitment to campaign on this global issue. Sarah’s commitment to helping others began at school, where she was a respected school leader, peer mentor and active volunteer through Scouts. Prior to commencing her combined Bachelor of Laws and Bachelor of Development Studies, Sarah excelled as part of the Newstep program for 2019.

Educational Disadvantage scholars

Newcastle, NSW 
Bachelor of Social Science / Bachelor of Laws (Honours) Scholarship Category: Educational Disadvantage
Enabling Pathway: Open Foundation

After experiencing her own challenges in life, Yazmin is determined to help others overcome hardship. She volunteers with Hunter Homeless Connect and other groups that help people facing extreme disadvantages. Her journey to study at the University of Newcastle through Open Foundation has highlighted her resilience and taught her the value of education and being of service. Yazmin is committed to sharing these values with her daughter to encourage her growth and acceptance towards others. Following her Bachelor of Social Science and Bachelor of Laws studies, Yazmin hopes to establish a legal support service for marginalised people who don’t have means to fair representation or to advocate for themselves.

Newcastle, NSW
Bachelor of Nursing Scholarship Category: Educational Disadvantage
Enabling Pathway: Open Foundation

Razia’s pursuit of education has made her a role model to other people from refugee backgrounds. Born in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Razia fled to Uganda when she was five. Against societal expectations, she managed to stay in school as a young teenager, while joining an organisation to help teach young orphans how to speak English and cultivate the land. Since arriving in Australia in 2018, Razia has pursued her dream to further her education, completing Open Foundation studies in 2019. Following her Nursing studies, Razia hopes to work in Australia and Africa. Her dream is to help build more hospitals in the Congo to treat fellow refugees, giving people the dignity and respect they deserve.

Port Macquarie, NSW
Bachelor of Business / Bachelor of Innovation and Entrepreneurship Scholarship Category: Educational Disadvantage

Fuelled by a vision to create a sustainable business, Toby started his first social enterprise at the start of his gap year. The Millennial Design Co. works with local Indigenous artists and community groups to make functional art and custom timber products from recycled materials. The business also employs the Willing and Able Foundation to provide sustainable employment for people who are intellectually disadvantaged on the Mid North Coast. Toby decided studying a combined Bachelor of Business and Bachelor of Innovation Entrepreneurship would help him test his social enterprise model. His long-term goal is to expand the business in more regional communities, merging his vision for cultural respect and entrepreneurial ethics across Australia.

Central Coast, NSW
Bachelor of Environmental Science and Management Scholarship Category: Educational Disadvantage
Enabling Pathway: Open Foundation

Erin is driven to protect and preserve our natural environment. Growing up on the Central Coast, she has always been engaged with nature. Erin has had a lifelong association with Surf Life Saving Central Coast – most recently working with school children as part of SLSCC’s education program – and has volunteered with Sea Shepherd. Her work with the Green Army and Toolijooa Environmental Restoration as a Bush Regenerator further inspired Erin to study Environmental Science and Management. Erin believes that simple changes to daily habits can drastically change the course of our lives. She hopes that being part of the Ma & Morley program will lead to even bigger changes in the future.

Cobar, NSW
Bachelor of Medical Radiation Science (Honours) (Radiation Therapy) Scholarship Category: Educational Disadvantage

Completing school in the remote mining community of Cobar in western NSW has shaped Abby’s strong views on social justice. Faced with limited opportunities due to Cobar’s very remote location, Abby dedicated herself to supporting her community. She completed eight annual trips into rural Australia with her family as part of the Bourke and Community Police Outback Trek. These experiences sparked her commitment to support other rural communities overcome the many and diverse problems they face. Her involvement with Batyr has helped her understand the importance of breaking down the stigma of mental health; being clear that it is alright to ask for help. In 2017, Abby received the Australian Defence Force Long Tan Youth Leadership and Teamwork Award, highlighting her many years of service to her school and local community. A passionate advocate for equity – regardless of where we live – Abby is driven to create positive change on a global scale.

Cessnock, NSW
Bachelor of Nutrition and Dietetics (Honours) Scholarship Category: Educational Disadvantage
Enabling Pathway: Open Foundation

Amy is studying Bachelor of Nutrition and Dietetics and plans to draw on personal experience to support others in need. Caring, determined and headstrong, Amy’s resilience has helped her overcome many health and personal issues to complete her Open Foundation studies and pursue her dream of becoming a dietician, while supporting her son. Her goal is to help more people enjoy better, healthier and more meaningful lives. Amy hopes to reach other countries and cultures with the knowledge she gains from the Ma & Morley program.

Central Coast, NSW
Bachelor of Education (Secondary) Scholarship Category: Educational Disadvantage
Enabling Pathway: Open Foundation

Liam knows that sometimes all you need in life is someone who will listen. He is driven to advocate for others working through unemployment, housing distress and financial hardship after his own struggles growing up. Liam volunteers to help disadvantaged youth on the Central Coast with the Together Helping Everyone Better Utilise Services (THEBUS) project. THEBUS helps thousands of young people between 12 to 25 each year, giving them spaces to relax, learn and access services. After completing his Open Foundation course, Liam is now studying a Bachelor of Education (Secondary) and is looking forward to supporting and inspiring young people as a high school teacher.

Aberdeen, NSW
Bachelor of Communication / Bachelor of Laws (Honours) Scholarship Category: Educational Disadvantage

Kate believes that small acts of kindness can transform the world. Growing up in the close-knit community of Aberdeen in the Upper Hunter taught Kate the power of people helping people. From serving meals to the homeless with Development and Relief Agency to volunteering for sporting and community groups, Kate’s actions have helped the most vulnerable and disadvantaged people in her community. In 2019, Kate represented the Upper Hunter at the National Student Leadership Summit in Adelaide. Upon her return, she helped organise a local leadership summit to show other students how to create change in their community. By studying a Bachelor of Communication and Bachelor of Laws, Kate hopes to show that many small acts, when multiplied by millions of people, can make a difference on a global scale.

Indigenous scholars

Belmont, NSW
Bachelor of Nursing Scholarship Category: Indigenous
Enabling Pathway: Yapug

A young Wirajuri woman, Breanna believes every person deserves to have their voice heard. She speaks loudly and proudly about her culture, something she hopes all Indigenous Australians feel supported to do. After completing Yapug, Breanna is now studying a Bachelor of Nursing. As a Registered Nurse, she hopes to create more positive change within her Indigenous community and ensure people aren’t treated differently because of their background. As a Ma & Morley scholar, Breanna hopes to pay respect to her culture and inspire other Indigenous students to fulfil their dreams.

Newcastle, NSW
Bachelor of Business Scholarship Category: Indigenous
Enabling Pathway: Yapug

Kayden is a Wiradjuri man from Dubbo. While Kayden admits that school wasn’t really for him, he took part in the Indigenous Youth Leadership Program and flourished as a school leader and active community volunteer. Kayden completed a traineeship with one of the big four banks and remained in banking for several years where he mentored another Aboriginal trainee. Kayden is the first in his family to attend university and move away from home and is now studying a Bachelor of Business after completing the Yapug program. He credits his positive mindset, passion and determination for his success and is proud to be an example for young people in his community.

Maitland, NSW
Bachelor of Social Science / Bachelor of Laws (Honours) Scholarship Category: Indigenous
Enabling Pathway: Yapug

Aleisha, a proud Wiradjuri woman, is passionate about increasing access to justice for Indigenous people. Coming from a large family, Aleisha knows the value of hard work and the importance of a helping hand. Growing up, she’s been a committed volunteer in her community of Lithgow in the Blue Mountains for many years. This included raising awareness and collecting donations for many charities, donating 30cm of her own hair to the Alopecia Foundation and volunteering as a peer mentor for both younger and Aboriginal students. Inspired by her older sister who also studied law, Aleisha has followed her lifechanging path to university. With a Bachelor of Social Science and Bachelor of Laws, Aleisha hopes to empower people who feel helpless and use her position to create a more equal world.

Central Coast, NSW
Bachelor of Education (Primary) Scholarship Category: Indigenous

Tanisha is a young Worimi and Biripai woman who grew up on Darkinjung country on the Central Coast. From a young age she has been learning and sharing ideas about Indigenous culture and education. This included representing her school at international conferences and delivering Acknowledgements of Country in Darkinjung language since Year 2. Tanisha believes that recognising the value and strength in our differences is key to a multicultural and just society. Channelling her desire to help others, in high school she started a charity to collect personal items for people without shelter. With her Bachelor of Education (Primary) Tanisha hopes to instil a passion for education and knowledge among young people as a primary school teacher.

Newcastle, NSW
Bachelor of Psychological Science (Honours) Scholarship Category: Indigenous
Enabling Pathway: Yapug

Bachelor of Psychology student Fleur hopes to bring a new perspective to the world. As an Indigenous woman, she views the earth as her home and her identity – her passion lies in preserving its sacred natural habitats for all. Fleur emphasises her admiration for the strong women in her family who have helped to shape her sense of justice and creative expression – in particular, she credits her mum’s work with Greenpeace for developing her social consciousness. Fleur was exposed to many acts of justice for the planet from a young age, including one action in which she rode the Rainbow Warrior at the Sydney Opera House to protest climate change. Fleur continues to raise awareness for global issues, including climate change. She is excited to explore opportunities and hopes for transformation through the Ma & Morley Scholarship Program.

Lǐng Jūn 领 军 scholars

Newcastle, NSW
Bachelor of Business / B Laws (Honours) Scholarship Category: Lǐng Jūn

The world has been Ashley’s classroom since starting her combined Bachelor of Business and Bachelor of Law degree in 2019. She joined the global-facing leadership program iLEAD plus, attended the University Scholars Leadership Symposium in Kuala Lumpur and the Forbes ‘30 under 30’ conference in Detroit – all in her first year. Ashley also facilitated the first United Nations Youth Consultation, as well as chairing the Newcastle Model United Nations. Subsequently, Ashley was nominated for Local Young Person of the Year by both the City of Newcastle and Regional Youth Development Officers Network. Ashley regularly volunteers for the Newcastle Youth Council, and recently undertook the role of Regional Development Officer with United Nations Youth NSW. She hopes to pursue her interest in social enterprise, international politics or international business policy as a career.

Newcastle, NSW
Bachelor of Arts / Bachelor of Laws (Honours) Scholarship Category: Lǐng Jūn

‘Speaking up for what’s right even when it’s not your fight’ sums up Bryson’s approach to life. He is a passionate advocate for LGBTQIA+ issues and climate justice. Bryson was named 2015 Regional Youth Services Awards Young Person of the Year for speaking out about his experiences as a young disabled man and an advocate for intersectionality. Bryson began volunteering with the ACON in Sydney and Newcastle in 2017. He went on to become a peer facilitator for ACON’s SPARK project to educate and mentor young men about sexual health. His workshops focus on education about preventing HIV transmission and helping people understand their place in their community. Bryson plans to continue tackling difficult issues through his Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Laws studies.

Newcastle, NSW
Bachelor of Development Studies Scholarship Category: Lǐng Jūn

Emily emigrated with her family from South Africa in November 2019 to continue her Bachelor of Development Studies. Growing up in a country severely affected by poverty, inequality and corruption, Emily developed an interest in leadership, politics and global issues from a young age. She participated in the 2017 Global Young Leaders Conference in the US, which included a mock debate at the United Nations Headquarters in New York. She also qualified for the 2018 World Independent Debating and Public Speaking Championships after raising awareness about many global issues as president of her school’s debating club. Emily believes sustainable living needs to be a priority for all global citizens. Using her passion for politics and debate, she hopes to spread this message on a global scale once she completes her Bachelor of Development Studies.

Newcastle, NSW
Bachelor of Education (Secondary) Scholarship Category: Lǐng Jūn

Bachelor of Education (Secondary) student Charli believes teachers have a crucial role in breaking down cultural stereotypes. She aspires to create culturally rich environments in which all students feel valued and respected. Her drive for social justice flourished at high school and has continued through her undergraduate studies. Charli regularly volunteers at her local high school helping disadvantaged students and works with adults with diverse abilities, teaching them how to live more independently. Charli is inspired by young people like Greta Thunberg who have the courage to stand up and facilitate change. She is looking forward to sharing the same values around environmental sustainability with her future students.

Maitland, NSW
Bachelor of Environmental Science and Management Scholarship Category: Lǐng Jūn

From watching proboscis monkeys in the jungles of Borneo to tracking elephants in the plains of Kenya, Tara’s passion for environmental sustainability and biodiversity conservation has led her all over the world. Tara hopes to use her Bachelor of Environmental Science and Management to make a difference in conservation – finding solutions that balance economic, environmental and social concerns. Tara volunteers weekly with Emeritus Professor Tim Roberts in the School of Environmental and Life Sciences where she assists with various projects – including the annual electric vehicle festival and mined lands conference – to share knowledge and improve future practice. As an amateur boxer, Tara also teaches self-defence and is a powerful voice for equity, justice and gender equality.

Charlestown, NSW
Bachelor of Arts Scholarship Category: Lǐng Jūn

Mitch first felt aware of belonging to a ‘global village’ when he helped to mobilise community support for a refugee resettlement program in his home of Tamworth. After volunteering to rebuild a flood-damaged school in Bangkok, his passion for social impact was steadfast. Through experiences speaking, teaching, studying and debating geopolitics, including as President of the University of Newcastle’s United Nations Society, Mitchell understands the complexities of global issues and the need for compassion and understanding to enable solutions. After completing his Bachelor of Arts degree, Mitchell plans to continue the ‘think global, act local’ approach with a career in politics, international relations or advocacy.

Newcastle, NSW
Bachelor of Teaching (Humanities) (Honours) Scholarship Category: Lǐng Jūn

Rod uses music to bring people together. Growing up in the small town of Manilla, 50km north-west of Tamworth in NSW, encouraged Rod to contribute where he could from a young age. A committed school leader, Rod was awarded the Long Tan Leadership and Teamwork Award for his service. He completed the Royal Australian Air Force gap year program in 2016 before coming to the University of Newcastle. Rod has volunteered his time as a musician for various events and supported students from over 30 countries as Residential Manager at Edward’s Hall. He continues to encourage students from all cultural backgrounds to share their musical skills through his music workshops. During his Teaching degree, Rod has mentored local high school students and contributed to many school communities – as always using music to help shape positive experiences.

Sydney, NSW
Bachelor of Medicine / Diploma of Languages Scholarship Category: Lǐng Jūn

True to her life motto ‘actions not words’, Helena has an extraordinary ability to balance numerous commitments with her Bachelor of Medicine and Diploma of Languages. Highlights among her volunteering and leadership roles include facilitating national and international student opportunities for the Australian Medical Students Association (AMSA) and representing Australia at international meetings on health policy and advocacy as Chair of AMSA Global Health. In addition, Helena facilitates the Youth Opportunities Australia Facebook group where young people can find out about funded opportunities, volunteering, events, scholarships and more. She also serves as the student representative on the University of Newcastle Council. All her endeavours share the themes of helping others to access opportunities for learning and growth or to raise awareness about social justice and health issues.

Eugowra, NSW
Bachelor of Physiotherapy (Honours) Scholarship Category: Lǐng Jūn

Visiting the Northern Territory in high school gave Sophie a clear vision for her future. She plans to start her own physiotherapy business and work in remote areas to improve access to services and help people have greater autonomy over their health. She also hopes to provide jobs for local people. These goals build on her experience growing up on a sheep farm in Eugowra, a small farming community in Central West NSW, and her time at boarding school, where she excelled as Boarding Captain and Dux. Both taught her the value of learning from others – what makes us different culturally, physically and socially – and how we can connect. She hopes to develop these qualities as a health practitioner in future.

Kahibah, NSW
Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) (Chemical) Scholarship Category: Lǐng Jūn

Minerva has travelled far and wide over the past few years – embracing the opportunities presented through her Bachelor of Engineering (Chemical). In 2017, she completed her first New Colombo Plan mobility scholarship to live and study in Singapore. A second scholarship in 2018 saw her study disaster risk reduction and sustainable development goals in the Republic of South Korea. In 2019, Minerva travelled to Borneo to learn about tropical ecology and forest rehabilitation. Back home, Minerva volunteers for the Engineering faculty. Her keen interest in sustainable development led her to studying chemical engineering and she hopes to use this to forge a successful career.