Passionate student earns scholarship
A LOVE of creatures, both great and small, has steered the career path Clarence Valley Anglican School student Matisse King will travel over the next four years.
And it's this passion to pursue the field of animal science that has resulted in the Year 12 graduate being selected as this year's Frank Glasson Scholarship recipient.
"I've always wanted to work with animals. I grew up around them on properties - livestock, domestic and native animals. My mum looked after injured wildlife,” Matisse said.
The 19-year-old, who will soon be heading off to the University of New England in Armidale to begin her degree, impressed the interview panel with her work ethic and community-minded spirit.
"She has her head and heart in it,” one of the panelists said.
But getting this far wasn't easy for the hard-working student, growing up in a single parent environment with three older siblings and identical twin Nahani, has illustrated the resilience and dedication required to continue down her academic path.
For a year Matisse studied by distance education travelling with her family to central Australia and demonstrating a sense of community that impressed the scholarship panel.
"We taught circus acrobatics to remote Indigenous communities and refugees in Darwin.
"Things like juggling, hoops, object manipulation, and then they all performed what they learned.
"It was a big achievement on their part,” Matisse said.
"They don't have all the opportunities we have and this sort of thing helps to alleviate destructive behaviour.”
Club publicity officer Richard Nichols said Midday Rotary was well aware of the extra cost of education for regional students who were living away from home, compared to metropolitan students.
"It's a disadvantage that our Rotary Club is attempting to redress with this scholarship,” he said.
"Providing that lever may mean the difference between following their dream or failing to achieve a start in the future they deserve.
"We've met some brilliant kids over the years,” Mr Nichols said.