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Student scholarship opens the door to opportunity

6 November 2017

Each year the University of Sydney offers more than $84 million in student scholarships to provide financial freedom and support to our students. For students like Sophie Clark, a scholarship can make all the difference.

Sophie Clark

Scholarship recipient, Sophie Clark.

From a young age, Sophie knew she wanted to be a nurse. That determination only grew when she sadly lost her mother to breast cancer.

“Mum was diagnosed when I was 12, before passing away when I was 17,” Sophie remembers. “She was in and out of hospital over that time and I noticed the true value of nurses. They had a huge impact on my mother’s time in care.”

Even as Sophie became more certain that she wanted a career helping people, she knew there was a serious obstacle. She wanted to study at the University of Sydney, which meant moving from her home in the small town of Wallabadah, near Tamworth, to one of Australia’s most expensive cities.

“I knew it would be a tremendous challenge to cover the costs of living in Sydney,” she says. “My father was still supporting my younger sibling. So I’d have to manage my own finances and living expenses.”

The only answer Sophie could see was to work full time, which would make it difficult to fully devote herself to her studies. Many students with great potential face the same challenges as Sophie, which is why the University has an active scholarship program.

Just as Sophie was thinking that money pressures might end her dream of becoming a nurse, she became aware of the University of Sydney’s nursing scholarships. She applied and was successful.

“Receiving the scholarship has been life changing,” Sophie says. “It allows me to throw myself into my degree and do the best I possibly can, so I can ultimately give the very best care to those in need.”

Every year the University provides scholarships, prizes and awards that give disadvantaged students the opportunity to devote themselves to their studies. For some, this is the only way they can continue their course. 

Read more scholarship stories