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The last three years have been an incredible journey for the recipient of the 2016 Ken and Lenka Morgan Scholarship. Studying Environmental Science (Environmental Management and Sustainability) full-time at Deakin University, and recently graduating with distinction.
“I’m so thankful to Kids Under Cover and Ken and Lenka Morgan for awarding me the scholarship for 2016. The funding allowed me to undertake numerous work placements. These placements not only helped me to complete my degree on time but gave me further qualifications putting me a step ahead of other graduates in my field. None of this would have been possible without the support”
Having never been on a plane before, Sarah* flew to Tasmania in July to take part in 10 days of full-time work experience with two researchers from the University of Tasmania.
During the placement students trapped Tasmanian Devils and Spotted Tail Quolls in Freycinet National Park, assisted with experiment set up, data collection and animal handling. Catching 17 individuals in total, they even got to see Tasmanian Devil babies!
Heading to the Northern Territory in late October for her longest placement, Sarah flew in to help a PhD student with her research on ghost bats, and didn’t come home until early December.
During this time, she assisted with experiment set up (including using thermal cameras), data collection and animal handling. Working in arid terrain in hot and humid conditions.
On her time off Sarah assisted with data entry and processing. “I was also lucky enough to get a work placement with an environmental consulting agency while I was there and spent a week doing fieldwork near Mary River.”
The experience gained during her placement in the Northern Territory cemented Sarah’s dreams to work in the conservation sector doing what she loves and helping to make the world a better place.
Having finished Uni (for the time being) Sarah is about to embark on another placement this time on the border of New South Wales and South Australia, just south of Broken Hill.
“I’m about to go to Scotia Wildlife Sanctuary with a team from La Trobe University. We will be monitoring ants, termites and scorpions.”
This placement will be Sarah’s second time volunteering with a team from La Trobe.
“I did 16 days of volunteer work experience in South Australia with La Trobe University in February last year. We worked long hours in extreme conditions in arid, featureless terrain. During this placement, I undertook a variety of activities, including data collection, and experiment set up. At night we surveyed for spiders and scorpions!”
“I want to complete a Masters degree to further specialise in my field. I’m currently looking at several courses including ones at Charles Darwin University and the University of Melbourne.”
This year she will work part-time as an environmental consultant and do more volunteering both within Victoria and interstate.
Long term? “I want to be employed in the conservation sector, doing what I love and helping to make the world a better place. In 5/10 years’ time I can see myself potentially doing a PhD doing fieldwork in some exotic part of the world!”
What an incredible journey Sarah has had. Needless to say, the entire Kids Under Cover team and Ken & Lenka Morgan are incredibly proud of her achievements and look forward to hearing about the many adventures ahead!
The Ken & Lenka Morgan Scholarship is a one-off scholarship of $5,000 which is awarded to one exceptional young person who is supported by our Studio Program. The scholarship funds can be used to assist the young person to pursue personal, educational and career goals.
Sarah and her sister received a two-bedroom studio in 2013 and continue to be engaged with their community and education, gaining the skills to live independently and build a brighter future.
*Name has been changed to protect identity
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