Fielding Menzies Scholar gains his independence

11 August 2015

Jacob Creek and his sugar gliders“The independence I’ve gained since staring university has been great".

Jacob Creek is one of the 2015 Fielding Menzies Tertiary Scholars, in his first year of a Bachelor of Environmental Science (wildlife and conservation biology) at the Burwood Campus of Deakin University.

Jacob is no stranger to change having moved from Arnhem Land to rural Victoria during high school. Given he was Dux of Nhill College in Year 11 and school vice-captain in Year 12, he seemed to cope with it pretty well. But the change in the last year was potentially more daunting, coming from Nhill to suburban Melbourne, moving out of home to take up university study.

"Heading off to University has been an amazing experience for me so far. I've learnt a lot and been able to take part in some great experiences,” Jacob said.

“I have recently returned from a wildlife camp to Cape Conran as part of my course. We spent four days trapping and handling small mammals as well as learning other skills needed to research and work with wildlife, such as radio tracking and working with a GPS. A personal highlight was checking cage traps with some rangers from DELWP and catching a Long Nosed Potoroo.”

Jacob is in no doubt that his scholarship assisted with this transition, taking the pressure off he and his family.

“I would definitely recommend a university scholarship to other students purely because the lesser amount of stress you have financially the easier it makes moving away from home and settling in to a new place. The scholarship has made a tremendous difference. I am using it completely to cover accommodation costs.

“I'm very thankful for the Fielding Menzies Tertiary Scholarship which has helped make all of this possible.”

The Fielding Menzies Tertiary Scholarships to Ormond College for 2016 open soon for applicants.

In the meantime, Jacob is well in the swing of university life. “I've enjoyed many aspects of University so far. The independence I've gained since staring university has been great. I've enjoyed meeting a lot of new people and working together on projects with others.

“Things I've least enjoyed about University would probably be the readjusting to the academic workload and the often unreliable tram travel to and from uni,” Jacob said.

 “Living away from home has been an awesome experience. I was very sceptical at first as to how I would cope, however the student residence I am staying at has been terrific and my roommate is great so it has been much better than I expected.”