Aspiring cybersecurity experts, computer scientists, and programmers with plans to design virtual content and games to drive positive change, are amongst a group of ambitious young Australians to receive a 2021 Westpac Young Technologists Scholarship today through Westpac Scholars Trust.
35 individuals from five universities across the country were awarded the undergraduate scholarship. Valued at $15,000 over three years, the scholarship will support the recipients’ tech-related studies and connect them to a network of individuals who share their drive to help shape a better future.
2021 Westpac Scholar Amy Myers will study a Bachelor of Creative Media at Murdoch University, Western Australia, where she plans to develop her skills to create more diverse narratives through technology.
“Storytelling is my biggest passion. I am eager to learn how concept art and interactive narrative technologies can enhance the impact of storytelling. I’m interested in creating more diverse representation, particularly around mental health and the LGBTQIA+ community, using games, digital art, film, animation and sound.”
Fellow 2021 Westpac Scholar Matthew Yamen is studying a Bachelor of Computer Science at RMIT. Like Amy, he hopes to combine his passion for technology with his drive to help others.
“I hope to utilise the skills and knowledge attained throughout my time at RMIT to establish a non-for-profit organisation that will be centred around providing accessible and affordable technology and systems for disadvantaged communities in third-world countries.”
According to Susan Bannigan, CEO of Westpac Scholars Trust, “As one of Australia’s largest education scholarship programs, the Trust affords an opportunity for those eager to turn their passion into their profession by supporting them through social initiatives or tertiary studies.”
“Great ideas are often borne from challenging times, and over the last year many Australians have used this time to reflect on what’s most important to them – especially school leavers who are facing into new challenges and decisions about what will come next,” she said.
Beyond financial support, each Westpac Young Technologists Scholar will take part in a Disruptive Leaders Program, which includes a five-day residential in Singapore in 2022.
“We’ve worked closely with Common Purpose and our university partners, in particular Murdoch University, to develop a transformational program that will not only challenge the Scholars’ thinking, but also increase their access to new networks and opportunities.”
The network and development opportunities extend beyond the formal program, with every scholarship recipient becoming a lifelong member of the program’s alumni, the Westpac 100 Scholars Network (W100).
Growing by up to 100 Westpac Scholars every year, the W100 brings together people from all walks of life and provides access to professional development and inspiring networks. Engagement is led and driven by the Scholars, with the support of the Trust.
“For many Westpac Scholars, the W100 is the best part of the scholarship,” added Bannigan.
“This year we celebrate a special milestone, reaching our first 500 Westpac Scholars. Seeing how far people have come and the impact they’re having gives me great hope for the future.”
Westpac Scholars Trust was established in 2014 with a $100 million gift from Westpac to help support individuals with the drive and ideas to help shape the future of Australia. Since its inception, more than $24 million has been awarded through 470 scholarships.
To learn more about our 2021 Westpac Young Technologists Scholars, visit the Scholars page of our website, where you’ll find bios on each of the 35 recipients.
The Westpac Young Technologists Scholarship is offered in partnership with Murdoch University, QUT, RMIT University, Western Sydney University and the University of Wollongong. 35 scholarships are awarded annually.
Published 25 March 2021