Scholarship winner an inspiration

Published on 12 February 2018


A City of Swan Lower Secondary student has been awarded one of 10 scholarships from The Young Australia League (YAL), which are given to students aged between 12 and 25 and are worth up to $12,500 annually.

Shanaye is one step closer to her goal of becoming a biomedical engineer after winning the scholarship. The La Salle College student has been in the care of foster parents since she was four years old, with her most significant challenge as a small child being changing homes so often and adjusting to new homes, new carers and new rules. For the past nine years, she has been with her current carers, giving her greater security. As well as enjoying sport, Shanaye is a confident public speaker and competed in the City of Swan Youth Out Loud competition in 2016 where she wrote a speech on her life as a foster child.

Shanaye hopes that in receiving a YAL scholarship she can be a role model for more foster children, inspiring them to reach for their dreams.

YAL was founded in 1905 by prominent WA businessman and politician, John Joseph (J.J.) “Boss” Simons, and the scholarships are funded through the charitable endowment trust created by the YAL board in 2014. This is the third year that YAL has offered scholarship opportunities to young Australians experiencing hardship due to social circumstances, disability or distance. Sponsored by the City of Swan, YAL scholarships are three years in length and are intended to enable secondary and tertiary level students to continue and succeed in their education. 

The scholarships offer up to three years funding assistance and cover expenses such as tuition fees, specialist courses, home tutoring, books, equipment, travel, living costs or even childcare to allow young parents to continue studying. 

YAL Chairman Frank Schaper said the 10 recipients, all from Western Australia, impressed the selection committee with the quality of their applications and genuine desire to succeed academically despite the financial and situational barriers facing them.