Two school leavers from Matamata have each been awarded a $6000 scholarship to put towards their first year of tertiary education at Wintec and the University of Waikato.
Their windfall comes from the David Johnstone Charitable Trust, which for the past 20 years has annually awarded scholarships to Waikato secondary school students embarking on a science or teaching qualification at the University of Waikato or Wintec.
Liam Barclay and Olivia Heta, both of Matamata College, are among 36 school leavers to be acknowledged at an awards ceremony on December 9 at The Atrium at Wintec in Hamilton.
Next year Liam will be studying towards a conjoint degree in computing science and mathematics at the University of Waikato.
“Receiving the scholarship takes a lot of pressure off financially which allows me to focus on study rather than having work more to pay my way,” he said.
2015 marks the 20th anniversary of The David Johnstone Charitable Trust scholarship programme, administered by Perpetual Guardian. The scholarship programme is one of the most significant in the Waikato as it assists up to 40 students every year.
Nola Delaney, trustee of the David Johnstone Charitable Trust, said it is a pleasure each year to help continue David’s legacy and see Waikato youth succeed.
“To be awarded a David Johnstone Charitable Trust scholarship, these students have demonstrated that they are all-rounders and can apply themselves,” Delaney said.
“We look for candidates with good academic skills so they can successfully complete their tertiary studies, along with other attributes that we believe David would have approved of,” she added.
David Johnstone was born in 1909 to one of the Waikato region’s pioneering farming families and passed away in February 1990.
Delaney said David’s farming success was great; however his overarching desire to have had a better education himself prompted him to leave a sizeable chunk of his estate to form the David Johnstone Charitable Trust.
Twenty years later, the David Johnstone Charitable Trust has paid over $3 million in scholarships to around 600 Waikato students beginning their tertiary education.
This year’s scholarship recipients come from 19 Waikato schools including Cambridge, Hamilton, Tokoroa, Thames, Matamata, Morrinsville, Te Aroha, Paeroa, Piopio, Otorohanga, Taumarunui, Te Kauwhata and Te Awamutu.
“Receiving the scholarship takes a lot of pressure off.”