The 2018 Bhavita Patel Scholarship recipient, Melora Stokes, from Moruya, NSW, is studying a Bachelor of Commerce at the ANU College of Business and Economics. Here she discusses the impact of this transformative scholarship on her life and studies.
What has been the highlight of your time at ANU so far?
One of my greatest highlights so far has been meeting a diverse range of people from all over the country and the world. It is so interesting to gain friendships and learn alongside other students who have such unique backgrounds and cultures. Other highlights include having the opportunities to find my passions through a variety of clubs and societies as well as workshops and social events.
What difference has receiving this scholarship made to you?
Receiving this scholarship has really taken the stress off needing a part-time job to survive since I have moved out of home. Because of this I am able to focus on work experience and volunteering opportunities which are helping me determine my passions and direction for my future. The scholarship helps me afford the never-ending expenses of being a full-time student, including textbooks, on-campus parking and dentist bills (just to name a few) and allows me to have more time to focus on my studies. The mentoring, advice and guidance from Deloitte has also been incredibly useful as it has allowed me to meet some really supportive and helpful people, understand the business world and structure my studies to get the best outcomes from my degree.
How has being a scholarship recipient changed your view of philanthropy?
Receiving this scholarship has showed me how much people can benefit from the generosity of others. It proves to me the value of community and supporting others to overcome any hardships to succeed in the future. This scholarship makes me strive to find ways to also give back to the community and help people with less than myself.
What would you like to say to the donors of this scholarship?
I would love to say a huge thank you to the donors of this scholarship. This scholarship has benefited my university experience and made my transition into independent adult life so much easier. I am grateful to have received the opportunities that it has created which are helping me determine my future path after graduation. The nature of the Bhavita Patel scholarship pushes me every day to work to my full potential and be grateful for the opportunities in life I receive.
What are your future ambitions?
At this point I am really focused on corporate sustainability and how I can engage businesses and government to make sustainable environmental and social positive changes. I would love to have greater involvement or future employment with an NGO to really make significant change in the world where it is most needed.