Ten students from Western NSW were recognised for their excellence in education at a prestigious award ceremony in Sydney recently.
The young students were among 131 other public school students and educators from across the state to receive scholarships as part of the Public Education Foundation (PEF) national awards.
The students received their scholarships at the Proudly Public! Celebrating Excellence in Public Schools awards night at Sydney Town Hall on May 15.
Representing academic excellence in the region were:
- Jade Blinman, Cowra High School.
- Emily Gartner, Forbes High School.
- Indy Jackson, Girilambone Public School.
- Kehanna Wood, Goodooga Central School.
- Naioka Welsh, Goodooga Central School.
- Kesha Loughrey, Goodooga Central School.
- Julie Lohse, Lightning Ridge Central School.
- Kyle Hall, Nyngan High School.
- Angus Williams, Ungarie Central School.
- Chayanne Bunning, Yeoval Central School.
Lightning Ridge's Julie Lohse was awarded with a four-year Harding Miller Education Foundation academic scholarship at the award ceremony.
"If I can't dance for a living, I'd like to become a psychologist. I believe the Harding Miller Scholarship would help me to achieve this," she said.
"I would have the resources I need to support me to achieve my goals and a mentor to keep me on track."
Yeoval Central School principal Nicole Bliss said the scholarship entitles Chayanne to a laptop, internet access, funds for other equipment and access to tutoring and mentoring.
"Chayanne received this after being successful in a rigorous selection process where about 70 Year 9 girls were chosen from over 160 applicants," Ms Bliss said.
Since the launch of PEF's scholarships program 10 years ago, more than 1000 students have been supported with life-changing scholarships.
During that decade the PEF has disbursed more than $3 million in scholarship funding.
The Secretary of the Department of Education, Mark Scott, thanked the Public Education Foundation for its ongoing support of public education in NSW.
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He said the scholarships aimed to remove barriers to achievement created by social and economic disadvantage.
"These scholarships are about recognising and rewarding student excellence to encourage high-achieving students to continue to maximise their potential," Mr Scott said.
"I congratulate our students, teachers and leaders who have won scholarships - it is their efforts that combine to create the extraordinary public education system we have in NSW."