Matthew Shepphard is from Bonny Hills, New South Wales, and is currently in his first year of studying for a Bachelor of Health Science at ANU. He is the recipient of an ANU Rural and Regional Equity Scholarship, a Bendigo and Adelaide Bank Scholarship for rural and regional students, and the Burgmann Price Scholarship.
For Matthew, receiving scholarship support has meant that he can realise his dreams of studying at university and pursue his passion for medicine.
"The difference that having a scholarship makes to my life is that I can actually come to university. Even with the scholarships I still have to work, but it means the difference between 20 hours per week and 40 hours per week to pay rent."
Matthew went to a high school where very few students go on to university. Fortunately, he received encouragement to apply to ANU from his chemistry teacher who is an ANU alumnus.
“My chemistry teacher mentioned that he did his PhD at ANU and that it’s a good place for science. So I went online that night and found my dream degree in a pre-med program and that’s what I’m studying now. In a lot of these regional areas ANU is not considered an option, whereas in reality it’s achievable if you’re given the means, such as through a scholarship.”
Matthew credits scholarship support with furthering his horizons.
“I feel like my uni story is slightly different to a lot of people as it involved "escaping" a small town.”
He is also keen to emphasise the impact that donors have through scholarship support.
“For the people who supported my scholarship I’d like to say thank you for considering an option of giving that’s directly focused on people. It’ll have a tangible influence on the world in that it means giving access to those that otherwise wouldn’t have it. It’s affected my view of philanthropy as well in that it shows that there are people who genuinely care about other people.”
ANU Giving Day 2018 is on Wednesday 3 October and is raising funds to support scholarships for rural and regional students, which help to give students like Seraina more than a degree.
Scholarships give students the freedom to choose their university experience and the freedom to shape their education. Without the necessity of juggling multiple jobs with full-time study, students have more time to study, pursue their interests and get more than a degree. You can help give students more than a degree by making a donation today.