Award winner keen to return to a regional life
A prospective rural medical student received the City of Karratha’s highest educational honour at a ceremony in the council chambers last week.
The Walkington Award has been running for 32 years and grants the winner $5000 towards tertiary education.
Last year’s winner Anshula Ashish is one year into a degree in medicine at Melbourne’s Monash University.
At a ceremony on Monday, November 21, another St Luke’s College graduate, Sophie Sparks, received the 2016 Walkington Award.
Ms Sparks said the award would ease the burden on herself and her family of relocating to Perth for study.
“I have been saving for quite a while,” she said.
“But even with those funds put aside I knew my savings wouldn’t go quite as far as I had hoped they would. I’d like to one day to return to Karratha or somewhere rural where I can have the opportunity to help out a community.”
City of Karratha Mayor Peter Long said it was humbling to hear of Ms Sparks’ and other past recipients’ desire to return to Karratha.
“We want to make education one of the things we are known for in Karratha,” he said.
“To me that’s part of being a city.
“I’d love to see the second generation of a family making a success of it here.
“I think it’s important for them to go away and get that experience in the outside world but then it’s great to have them wanting to come back.
“There are more and more people like that now.”
The award is named after founding director of the Karratha College, Al Walkington.
Karratha College is now North Regional TAFE.