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Scholarship opens many doors: winner

Monday, 21st February, 2011

SUCCESS: Jenny Sandow’s career is in full flight thanks to a WCMA scholarship. SUCCESS: Jenny Sandow’s career is in full flight thanks to a WCMA scholarship.

By John Casey

Four years after earning an important scholarship, Jenny Sandow wants more Broken Hill students to follow in her footsteps.

Twenty-four-year-old Jenny, from Pimpara Lake Station 200 kilometres north of Broken Hill, said accepting the Russel Harland Memorial Scholarship changed her life.

"This is such an excellent program for university students and I would urge all eligible people to apply," she said.

"This opportunity has opened up so many doors for me and after earning the award in 2007, here I am now back in the country doing what I want todo." 

The scholarship program is run by the Western Catchment Management Authority (WCMA) and is awarded each year to a university student from NSW who displays strong personal, community and educational commitment to rural or regional areas.

According to WCMA Operations Manager Russell Grant, students should be undertaking their first degree and returning for their second year of study in the areas of agriculture, natural resources, Indigenous or cultural heritage studies, communication or business.

Jenny Sandow, who is now employed full time as a Community Support Officer at the WCMA's Cobar office, said the scholarship would dramaticallyimprove employment opportunities for graduates.

"Apart from the $5000 per year for up to three years there is also a paid work experience component and a guaranteed one-year work contract,so it is excellent for uni students," Jenny said. 

"Having work experience on your resume is so valuable and the variety of work you can do, assisting property holders who are passionate about the land, is very rewarding." 

The Russel Harland Memorial Scholarship has been supporting students for the past five years, but so far Jenny is the only recipient to come from within the actual WCMA boundaries.

"I'd love to see another person who grew up in the western catchment area become involved," Jenny said.

The scholarship is named in memory of Russel Harland, a crusader for natural resources management in the western catchment who passed away suddenly at the age of 44.

Applications will be accepted until April 1 and full details are available from the WCMA website, www.western.cma.nsw.gov.au.

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