16 June 2015

Benefactors Tom Pearce, Susan Lloyd and Erica Diment with Don Hawke Memorial Scholarship winner, Madison Baj. Students will be celebrating with both pride and gratitude on June 18 when the University of South Australia awards more than 131 scholarships, grants an awards, with $650,000 from the awards pool of more than a million dollars, provided by local donors.

UniSA’s Scholarships and Grants Ceremony will be held on Thursday 18 at the Allan Scott Auditorium, City West campus.

UniSA Vice Chancellor Professor David Lloyd says the scholarship ceremony is one of the highlights of the year, emblematic of UniSA’s community of care, support and generosity.

“Literally hundreds of people contribute to these scholarships, grants and awards from large and small individual donations, right through to support from organisations and businesses, but what they have in common is a belief in the power of education to transform lives,” Prof Lloyd says.

“In a sea of worthy charities and causes, our donors understand that giving people opportunities to learn, to empower themselves and to go forward into society as capable talented contributors is one of the greatest gifts there is.”

This year two Gavin Wanganeen Indigenous Scholarships valued at $20,000 each will be awarded for the first time thanks to enormous support from almost 600 individual donors. The scholarships are available to Indigenous students enrolled full time in any undergraduate program. Now on its way to becoming a perpetual award for Indigenous students, this year’s recipients will receive their awards from former Port Power champion, Gavin Wanganeen in person.

Other highlights include the presentation of the Don Hawke Memorial Scholarship valued at up to $125,000 to support a rural/regional student who has taken a gap year and now wants to begin a degree program. A gift from the Pearce Family, the scholarship honors Don Hawke brother of the late Jean Pearce.

Director of Advancement at UniSA, Deborah Heithersay says the stories unveiled through the scholarship ceremonies, both of those who give to education and the young men and women who benefit from that generosity, are inspirational.

“Behind every gift there is a story – sometimes of a yearning for an education denied, sometimes of opportunities missed and sometimes honoring the gifts or others by paying that generosity forward,” Heithersay says.

“We have some amazing donors and we are deeply grateful for every dollar we receive which is why the ceremony has such an important place in our annual calendar – it celebrates our best instincts.”

This year the Cowan Grant – founded by Marnie Cowan and her son Bob - to support disadvantaged students to gain a higher education and to take part in educational experiences that involve international travel and adventure – will be awarded to the 100th student.

In addition, 2015 will see the first International Student Entrepreneurship Capital Pty Ltd Awards presented, the largest privately funded range of scholarships for international students ever presented at UniSA.

This year the State Minister for Employment Higher Education and Skills, Gail Gago, will also attend the ceremony.

“The evening will be one of great joy and celebration and hopefully will also inspire others to give the gift of education,” Heithersay says.


Media contact: Michèle Nardelli office: +61 8 8302 0966 mobile: 0418 823 673 email: michele.nardelli@unisa.edu.au



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