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A Deakin graduate’s donation creates a new scholarship to support DBS students.

Deakin commerce student Carina Mammone is the recipient of a new Deakin scholarship that’s based on the principle of “paying it forward”.

Carina has been awarded the Underhill Bowater Paying Forward Scholarship which over the next three years will support her studies and enable her to attend workshops and conferences to help develop her business knowledge and skills.

The Underhill Bowater Paying Forward Scholarship was initiated by Deakin graduate Brad Underhill who last year won the prestigious 2017 Bowater Trust Medal.

Choosing to donate the $5000 prize money, Brad consulted with Deakin Business School (DBS) and the Bowater Trust Board who offered to match his donation to create a three-year scholarship for rural-background students who are experiencing some form of disadvantage.

Brad says he felt very lucky to be awarded the Bowater Trust Medal last year and while the prize money was something he could have used, he simply didn’t feel comfortable accepting it.

‘I am a working married adult and felt that I was taking the money from a student who had worked hard, but was not in the same stable financial position as me. Also, the Bowater Trust Medal is recognition for both academic achievement and community leadership. It seemed natural to extend the intentions of the award with a scholarship that combines those two attributes.’

As a small business owner and also a volunteer with a number of community organisations, Brad has also offered to mentor each scholarship winner.

‘As a student, I was mentored and later became an academic mentor. In my private life I mentor a number of young disadvantaged children. I am a great believer in the power of having another independent voice to help provide perspective on life. This scholarship aligns with my personal belief in social responsibility and provides personal satisfaction by allowing me to help a young person suffering disadvantage,’ he says.

Carina is studying a combined Bachelor of Commerce/Bachelor of Public Health and Health Promotion and is looking forward to a career in public health policy.

Growing up in rural Victoria, she says she can understand how social factors influence, and sometimes determine, health status.

‘I’ve found myself thinking of (somewhat novel) ideas to change what is currently being implemented and I’m looking forward to being part of the decision process of making change. This course, along with practical experience, will not only give me the opportunity to meet my career goals, but exceed them.’

Feeling ‘very fortunate’ to be chosen as a recipient of the Underhill Paying Forward Scholarship, Carina says it will make a significant difference to her Deakin study journey.

‘This scholarship means a great deal to me as it opens doors to workshops, conferences and other opportunities to develop my knowledge outside of my university studies. Over the past year I’ve had to narrow down options based on expense and I do feel as though I missed out on beneficial knowledge and skills. I am excited to see what opportunities are ahead and I couldn’t be more thankful.’

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