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International scholarship for Elinor’s Indigenous policy study dream

This article appears in: Humanities and Social Science, Indigenous Knowledges, Studying in Australia
Indigenous knowledges building

Elinor’s focus on her studies recently paid off when was awarded a Vice-Chancellor’s International High Achiever Scholarship to study a postgraduate degree at Charles Darwin University in Darwin. At 22-years-old, Elinor is one of the youngest students in her class, but she’s on a decidedly advanced study path—a Master of Public Policy that she’ll use to address Indigenous disadvantage.

Elinor smiling

I came to CDU with clear goals in mind to learn about Indigenous peoples, have an opportunity to work with them, and establish connections with organisations advancing Indigenous rights. CDU offers many courses and does a lot of research in fields that fit my interests in Indigenous studies

Elinor completed an undergraduate degree in linguistics in her native Philippines, partly driven by her interest in Indigenous culture and knowledges. For Elinor, CDU was an obvious next step in pursuing her passion for study and for advancing the rights of Indigenous peoples.

Elinor has extended family in Darwin—a support network that has made it easier to study in Australia. “Even though my family has supported me in my studies, the cost of studying abroad is one of the biggest challenges an international student faces. I was lucky to be granted a scholarship, which helps me manage the cost of tuition,” Elinor said.

Elinor with her family

As she found her feet during her first semester of study, Elinor said she struggled with confidence when she discovered she was younger and had less professional experience than her classmates, many of whom had already started their careers as policy makers.

“At times this overwhelmed me, but of course I’m here to learn from these people. Now I’m starting my second semester with a lot more confidence because I was able to adjust and keep a positive mindset,” Elinor said.

Elinor’s advice to people considering studying at university is to know your interests and passion so you can decide which area of study to pursue.

CDU is very student-friendly and provides new students with plenty of support and guidance as they familiarise themselves with how the university works

“Another thing I like about studying at CDU is the wide access students have to library resources, which makes doing research a lot easier” Elinor said.

When she graduates from CDU, Elinor hopes to find work addressing issues affecting Indigenous people, and to complete a research project working directly with Indigenous peoples and communities.

CDU is dedicated to embracing Indigenous Knowledges and perspectives into all aspects of the University by participation in ethical research with communities to develop sustainable livelihoods and preservation of knowledge; providing unique courses in Indigenous culture, history, policy and language. Explore our courses

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