HSC student awarded $150,000 scholarship to ACU

News | HSC student awarded $150,000 scholarship to ACU

Posted 9 November 2021 by Catholic Education in News

Eilish Norwood has definitely finished her secondary schooling on a high. The talented, hardworking Year 12 student from St John the Evangelist Catholic High School, Nowra, was recently awarded a Ramsay Scholarship from the Australian Catholic University (ACU), to study a Bachelor of Arts (Western Civilisation)/Bachelor of Laws.

Each scholarship recipient will receive $150,000 towards their course fees and accommodation. Eilish is also eligible to receive one return economy airfare to participate in an approved program of study abroad as part of the course.

Born and bred in Milton, Eilish is extremely grateful for the scholarship, and the possibilities that may come from it. “Coming from a regional area, the scholarship will provide me with so many more opportunities, which I’m so excited to partake in,” she said.

“I’ll have a chance to travel overseas, live on campus, and engage with students from different walks of life” – Eilish Norwood 

To add to her growing list of achievements, this outstanding student, who finished first in her year in Studies of Religion 2; Modern History; History Extension 1; and English Advanced, also received early entry offers into Medicine from Macquarie University, ACU, University of Wollongong, and was the recipient of the Outstanding Excellence in Academic Studies Award, and 2021 PAX Christi Award - in recognition of her service and public witness to her faith within the St John the Evangelist school community.  

Sandra Hogan, Principal of St John the Evangelist Catholic High School, couldn’t be happier for her dedicated student. “We’re very proud of Eilish, she is a deserving recipient of this scholarship,” she said.

“Eilish has a generous, kind heart, is committed to her faith and actively seeks out opportunities to make a positive change in her community. She strives for excellence in all she does” – Sandra Hogan, Principal of St John the Evangelist, Nowra 

Aside from a 40 minute bus ride each way to school, a part-time job, being a volunteer surf lifesaver, and studying for her HSC during the COVID pandemic, Eilish also had to tackle a rigorous scholarship application process, which involved submitting a detailed resume - including her HSC subjects, academic achievements; community engagement activities and leadership experiences - along with a 1,500 word essay, before sitting a sixty minute interview with five university professors!

Eilish is extremely grateful for the opportunities and the support provided by the St John’s school community, especially Ms Carla Hill - Careers and Student Futures Adviser - who guided her on how to best approach the application process, while juggling a busy workload. 

“St John's Catholic High School has a great focus on peace and just relationships, and excellence in learning founded on Catholic Social Teaching principles,” said Eilish. “As a school house captain and Youth Ministry leader, I was encouraged and given opportunities to get involved in community service and social justice activities, such as Vinnies and Project Compassion, to do things to help others.”

At this stage Eilish is not sure what career opportunities will be available at the conclusion of her studies, but with such a strong work ethic and passion to make a difference in the world, the possibilities are endless and we look forward to seeing where her journey takes her.  

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