A passionate veterinary student has been awarded a $30,000 QCoal Foundation scholarship to help her study at James Cook University this year.
Melanie Martyn, Old Banchory, 65km west of Clermont, began a veterinary science degree at JCU this year, and has been awarded a scholarship from the QCoal Foundation.
She said growing up at Old Banchory, a 20,200 hectare beef cattle operation running about 3000 head of Charbray cattle, led her to pursue a career as a vet.
“It was amazing - I was always very hands-on, helping dad out, and he taught us everything, and let us do a bit of everything,” she said.
“It really pushed me to want to go back to that and help out in that industry in any way I can.”
Ms Martyn is the the eldest of four, and the daughter of Ross and Sam Martyn.
The scholarship was stablished to enrich the lives of rural and remote Queensland communities, the QCoal Foundation supports initiatives that are focused on health, liveability and education in those areas.
In particular, the foundation is helping to provide a pathway for rural and remote students to attend university.
The scholarship, valued at $10,000 per year over three years, is designed to assist the student with their studies and help meet their living expenses.
Ms Martyn grew up on a farm at Clermont, and veterinary science was always a passion.
Ms Martyn said she is thoroughly enjoying her studies.
“Veterinary science has always been an interest of mine after growing up on a cattle property with an array of pets, and JCU seemed like the most appropriate uni to undertake this course with its focus on tropical medicine and rural placements,” she said.
“Receiving this scholarship was some of the best news as it will help me through my studies and open so many possibilities.”
Ms Martyn said the scholarship will help her meet her everyday living expenses.
“I will now be able to cover my accommodation costs much more easily, and am also thinking about the possibility of placements in areas I otherwise would not have been able to go and even exchange in later years.”
QCoal Foundation Director Christopher Wallin said Ms Martyn was a worthy recipient.
“On behalf of the QCoal Foundation I congratulate Melanie on being this year’s QCoal Foundation Scholarship recipient,” Mr Wallin said.
“We were again very impressed with the calibre of applicants, particularly those who, like Melanie, are from the regional areas surrounding our operations.
“Melanie’s long-held dream to become a regional veterinarian epitomises what this scholarship is about and we wish her all the very best with her studies.”
The QCoal Foundation scholarships are open for students who intend to study at JCU, with preference given to those studying Geology or Earth Sciences from communities in rural and regional areas of Queensland.