As COVID-19 drastically impacts the way we all live, study and work, the number of vulnerable students requiring urgent financial support is growing rapidly.
Every day, disadvantaged students need to make impossible choices in order to continue their studies. Go to class or work an extra shift to help pay the rent? Buy groceries or textbooks?
Every day is a struggle to overcome the barriers to finishing their degree.
1 in 3 disadvantaged students regularly miss lectures or classes because they have to work
1 in 5 disadvantaged students regularly go without food because they can’t afford it
|1 in 6 disadvantaged students are supporting children or other dependents||1 in 2 regional students have to relocate in order to study their course|
30% do not have access to medical or dental treatment due to the cost
55% struggle with the cost of travel to attend classes
For these vulnerable young people, the COVID-19 crisis not only threatens their health and financial circumstances, but their education.
The Diversity Access Scholarship is a lifeline for disadvantaged students. But with unprecedented demand for support, we don’t have the funds we need to assist them all.
Will you please help these students continue their studies during this challenging and uncertain time?
100% of your donation will go towards supporting students in need.
Madison beat cancer, now she's battling to stay at university
“When I was 17, I was diagnosed with a rare childhood cancer called rhabdomyosarcoma,” explains Madison Ritchie. “The doctor said I had three months to live. But I’m a bit of a stubborn person, so I was like ‘I’ll get back to you on that.’”
Thankfully, the treatment worked – and Madison is cancer-free today. But it did bring some lifelong consequences. She struggles with extreme fatigue, cognitive impairment and a compromised immune system caused by her aggressive treatment.
“Sadly, the treatment also left me infertile,” says Madison. It was difficult news to cope with, but it ultimately led Madison down a new path – studying to become a midwife.
Last year, Madison moved from the NSW Central Coast to begin a Nursing degree at UTS. And although she’s successfully made it to her second year, it hasn’t all been smooth sailing.
“It’s very expensive living in Sydney, and I still have many doctors’ appointments,” she says. “I’m 100% determined to finish my degree, it will just take me a little longer than other students.”
Without the financial support she receives from the Diversity Access Scholarship, Madison says there’s no way she’d be able to complete her degree.
“I can’t tell you how relieved I felt when I saw the word ‘Granted’ on my scholarship application. For me, it meant that I could buy a stethoscope for prac. That I wouldn’t have to skip a meal here and there. That I could afford to catch the train to the Central Coast to see my family and oncologist.”
But next semester, there are no guarantees. With an unprecedented number of requests for assistance, we can’t help all eligible students unless we raise enough money.
Please help us provide more Diversity Access Scholarships to students in desperate need of support.
Helping tomorrow’s healthcare heroes
Many of the students in need of financial assistance are studying nursing, just like Madison. Despite facing significant personal challenges, they want to care for others and believe in giving back.
Will you please give back too, and donate to the Diversity Access Scholarship today?
Professor Suzanne Chambers AO, Dean of the UTS Faculty of Health, is among the many UTS community members calling for action. “The opportunity for education does not exist equally for everyone in our society,” says Professor Chambers.
“We are calling on you – our alumni and friends of UTS – to make those opportunities more available to our most disadvantaged students. This is even more important now, in the current crisis, when areas of disadvantage are being amplified. We are asking you to help more students just like Madison.”
“The opportunity for education does not exist equally for everyone in our society. We are calling on you to make those opportunities more available to our most disadvantaged students.”
Professor Suzanne Chambers AO, Dean of the UTS Faculty of Health
You can help students in crisis
Please help us provide more Diversity Access Scholarships to disadvantaged students as they work hard to complete their degree.
Your gift will help provide textbooks, food, housing and certainty to vulnerable students whose lives have been turned upside down. More nursing students like Madison will have the support they need to finish their degree, playing a vital role in our overstretched health sector. And after this crisis is over, your support will ensure other students in need are empowered to complete their studies and reach their full potential.
Support students now
When you give, you can be confident 100% of your donation will go to your chosen area.
What is the Diversity Access Scholarship?
The Diversity Access Scholarship assists students from low socio-economic backgrounds who may also be experiencing other forms of educational disadvantage which make it difficult to achieve their educational goals. This scholarship is available to undergraduate, postgraduate and research students and is valued between $400 and $2,500 per session.
Who is eligible for a UTS Diversity Access Scholarship?
Students experiencing financial hardship together with other barriers to university such as:
- Sole parent responsibilities
- Carer responsibilities
- Long-term medical condition
- Disability or ongoing effect of abuse
- Indigenous background
- Regional or remote background
- Refugee or migrant status
How can I help students in need?
Every UTS student should be given the chance to reach their full potential, regardless of their background or circumstances. But for many students experiencing disadvantage, this opportunity is only made possible through the generosity of people like you.
Here is how you can help:
- Make a one-off gift to Diversity Access Scholarships
- Give a monthly recurring donation to Diversity Access Scholarships
- Leave a lasting legacy by including a gift to UTS in your Will
- UTS Staff can join the Staff Giving Program.
What if I can't afford to donate now, but would like to in the future?
We understand it’s a hard time for many people right now.
If you can’t afford to donate today, but would like to in the future, please let us know. When you register your interest, you'll also be given the opportunity to share a message of hope to students currently receiving the Diversity Access Scholarship.
*All data from Universities Australia Student Finances Survey, August 2018