Schol­ar­ship helps grad­u­ates

The Morning Bulletin - - NEWS - Sean Fox Sean.Fox@cap­news.com.au

MARIA Mitchell-Lawton is a proud in­dige­nous wo­man.

Yes­ter­day she was one of 95 Rock­hamp­ton in­dige­nous stu­dents who cel­e­brated grad­u­at­ing from Year 12 in a spe­cial cer­e­mony held at CQUniver­sity in Rock­hamp­ton.

Th­ese stu­dents were given schol­ar­ships by the Queens­land Abo­rig­i­nal and Tor­res Strait Is­lan­der Foun­da­tion (QATSIF) schol­ar­ship pro­gram to help them com­plete their se­nior school­ing and in­crease their job op­por­tu­ni­ties.

The Em­maus Col­lege School Cap­tain said she en­joyed her stud­ies, es­pe­cially English, math­e­mat­ics and le­gal stud­ies.

“The schol­ar­ship has ben­e­fited me be­cause it has given me the mo­ti­va­tion to be­lieve that I can ac­tu­ally achieve things ... my learn­ing is not waste­ful,” she said. “Ed­u­ca­tion is very im­por­tant to not only my­self but to my cul­ture and my peo­ple.

“It is very pow­er­ful and you can do a lot with ed­u­ca­tion so I en­cour­age my in­dige­nous peo­ple to strive for bet­ter things.”

Maria has big plans ahead of her af­ter she grad­u­ates from high school.

“I plan on go­ing to univer­sity and com­plet­ing my de­gree in law or crim­i­nol­ogy and crim­i­nal jus­tice,” she said.

Abo­rig­i­nal and Tor­res Strait Is­lan­der Part­ner­ships Min­is­ter Mark Furner said the QATSIF schol­ar­ship pro­gram pro­vides a bright fu­ture for thou­sands of in­dige­nous stu­dents in Queens­land.

“More than 6000 schol­ar­ships have been awarded to stu­dents in more than 250 schools from all sec­tors through­out the state, in­clud­ing in re­gional and re­mote lo­ca­tions,” he said. “Last year, QATSIF schol­ar­ship re­cip­i­ents made up al­most half of the state’s es­ti­mated In­dige­nous Year 12 co­hort.”

PHOTO: CHRIS ISON ROK131017CGRADUATES2

GOALS: Maria Mitchell-Lawton from Em­maus Col­lege is about to grad­u­ate from high school with the as­sis­tance of a QATSIF schol­ar­ship.

PHOTO: CHRIS ISON ROK131017CGRADUATES4

Sa­van­nah Kan­ters from St Ur­su­las Col­lege re­ceived a QATSIF schol­ar­ship.

PHOTO: CHRIS ISON ROK131017CGRADUATES3

Shauna Bee­z­ley, Akita Bee­z­ley and Kylie Briggs from Moura High School.

PHOTO: CHRIS ISON ROK131017CGRADUATES1

QATSIF schol­ar­ship stu­dents cel­e­brate at CQUniver­sity.

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