Taylor Dickinson is one of eight local students that the Country Education Foundation (CEF) of Cootamundra is supporting this year.

Taylor is in her second year of a Bachelor of Paramedicine at Charles Sturt University in Bathurst. I asked her recently about how she is finding her course and she replied “I’m absolutely loving it so far. The course is very hands-on and interactive. I’ve recently completed my clinical simulations which is a week of simulation call-outs around Bathurst that we get to attend and treat the patients.”

The CEF was established to provide financial assistance and support to local youth to help them to achieve their education, training and vocation aspirations. We recognise that the cost of rural students pursuing their goals after high school is often much greater than those of their metropolitan counterparts and that sometimes these costs can be prohibitive.

Taylah told us that “the grant from CEF was able to help me purchase equipment needed to be able to give me the best opportunity to successfully finish my degree.”

As a CEF grant recipient she was also eligible for a $2000 grant from the Three Rivers Department of Rural Health at CSU.

She said that this extra grant “will assist me in being able to attend placement later in the year (maybe even to a potential placement overseas in London), which is an amazing opportunity”.

Taylah’s goal for this year is to gain as much experience as she can and plans to volunteer as First Aid staff at various events to help bolster her resume.

After graduation, Taylah plans to work in London for a few years before returning to work in rural NSW.

Other grant recipients this year include Luke Dowell, who was captain of Cootamundra High School in 2021, and who is studying a Bachelor of Information Technology, specialising in Cybersecurity, at Charles Sturt University.

He has mapped out a very exciting career path to become a cybersecurity analyst for the Australian Government.

Ella Ronning completed a year of a teaching degree in Sydney which was mostly online due to COVID and has now transferred to the Australian Catholic University in Canberra to continue her Bachelor of Primary Education.

Ella’s goal is to become a teacher in a rural environment.

Olivia Hamilton was a grant recipient in 2021 and we are happy to continue to support her as she works towards her goal of becoming a GP and work in rural health.

She is studying a Bachelor of Health (Pre-Med) at ANU in Canberra and has achieved excellent results in her first year due to her strong work ethic and motivation.

Olivia plans to apply for the Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery later this year which she finds “both exciting and nerve-racking”! Ella Murphy took at gap year in 2021, working three part-time jobs to save money to relocate to University of Canberra to study a Bachelor of Interior Architecture. The committee is proud to support her goal of opening her own interior design business when she graduates.

Dylan Vivian is passionate about music. He received a music bursary from the Riverina Conservatory of Music and wants to pursue a career in music.

Dylan has been accepted into the Bachelor of Contemporary Music at the Australian Institute of Music in Melbourne. Georgie Heggaton took a gap year in 2021 and worked while completing a University of Canberra Preparation Scheme with a Distinction result.

Georgie has decided that she would like to become a teacher and is enrolled in Bachelor of Education at Charles Sturt University at Wagga-Wagga. Blake George has relocated to Bathurst and is studying a Bachelor of Business Studies at Charles Sturt University.

CEF Cootamundra fundraises through the year and accepts donations from local residents and businesses in order to provide financial grants to students who need an extra helping hand. If you would like to help support current and future youth of Cootamundra, Wallendbeen and Stockinbingal to achieve their educational goals,

find our details on our Facebook page, Country Education Foundation of Cootamundra. If not on Facebook you can: Donate online (https://cef.org.au/foundations/cootamundra/) Make a deposit into CEF of Cootamundra at SWSCU, BSB 802 367, A/C 400 149 184 adding your name as reference.