For Olive Ivanoff, coming to Canberra to study at ANU meant she could pursue her ambitions. And now, staying here is more important than ever.
Originally from Jamberoo, New South Wales, Olive received an ANU Region Scholarship that allowed her to come to ANU, live on campus, and connect with other rural and regional students.
"I've found that there are a lot of really good networks for rural and regional students here. This is great, as for someone like me it could easily feel like everyone here is from a major city."
The networks formed by students while at ANU are a rich part of the university experience that can change lives. While scholarships provide this opportunity for students, many of them fall on unexpected hardship during their studies. Olive is one of many students who found themselves in a difficult situation in the current COVID-19 pandemic.
"My situation is that I've unfortunately lost my job, as it was hospitality work. This has been quite stressful as it's not easy to find another job. I support myself so it's not ideal."
Olive feels Canberra is the best place for her to keep studying.
"I do have a good environment for studying here. I want to remain in Canberra instead of going home, as the internet connection and study spaces aren't ideal at home. I live in a shared house in Canberra with three other ANU students, so we're all in the same boat."
Scholarships create opportunities for students at university. Supporting students through unexpected hardship will help them make the most of these opportunities and keep thriving.