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Top tips on applying for a leadership scholarship

18 September 2017
Experience at some of Australia's leading firms

Applications for our Leadership Scholarship are now open to all high-calibre students interested in studying engineering, computing or project management in 2018.

Arjun Bhuyan leadership scholarship

The Leadership Scholarship is valued at $18,000 per year over four years. It is designed to provide recipients across the span of their respective degrees with leadership development and a professional experience program at some of Australia's leading firms, which this year included Thomas Global, Abergeldie and Laing O'Rourke.

Scholarship recipients receive ongoing academic mentorship, access to valuable industry networks and alumni, and undertake project-based units of study.

Opportunities to interact with industry leaders has been the standout feature of the scholarship for current first-year student and recipient Arjun Bhuyan, who this year commenced his Bachelor of Engineering Honours (Mechanical).

Below, Arjun reflects on his experiences so far as a Leadership Scholarship recipient, in addition to sharing his tips for students considering applying.

What has been the highlight of the Leadership Scholarship so far?

"Opportunities where I have been able to interact with industry representatives firsthand standout for me as highlights of the scholarship," says Arjun.

"For instance, all scholarship recipients are involved in an industry challenge evening, where we are all split into smaller groups and assigned a real-world problem by an industry partner in attendance.

"We're required to brainstorm possible solutions before deciding on the best approach, which we ultimately have to present to industry mentors and university staff.

"These kinds of activities are designed to build-up our skills in leadership, stakeholder and relationship management, teamwork and problem solving.

"On the night, we got to demonstrate all of these skills, as well as network with mentors from companies including Sydney Water and Aurecon."

What is your top tip when applying for the Leadership Scholarship?

"Leadership is much more than just a title or a position – for example, you may volunteer as part of a team and, while you may not be the person in charge, the interpersonal skills required in a situation such as this are central to good leadership.

"Most importantly though, your application should be genuine and demonstrate your personality, since who you are conveys your leadership qualities."

What advice would you tell your Year-12 self today?

"I would tell them to go for it and simply apply," says Arjun.

"I had doubts about not applying for the scholarship and almost convinced myself I didn't have a chance against the competition.

"Even if you have an inkling of interest, throw in your hat and put in an application. It's an amazing opportunity - just make sure you apply early!

"Completing and submitting your applications early means you will have less to stress about as the HSC gets closer.

"Finally, with regards to the HSC, try to avoid stressing out before exams by planning out your work and preparing early. Trust in your preparation to get the results you want."

Applications for the 2018 Leadership Scholarship close on Monday 16 October. Applications now open via the University's Scholarship Office.