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Uni a piece of pizza thanks to alumni-backed scholarships

Thursday, 12 October 2017 1:13pm

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Donna Rose McKay Scholarship recipient Becks Mercer chats to Stewardship Officer Kellie Bain at the Union Lounge last week. 

Students who received University of Otago alumni-supported scholarships reflected on positives from their first academic year with peers and staff at a “pizza and catch-up event”, organised Development and Alumni Relations Office (DARO), at the Dunedin campus last week.

DARO Stewardship Officer Kellie Bain welcomed students to the Union Lounge before Alumni Relations Officer Kaitlin Bishop spoke about the significance of being and Otago alumni, and how staying in touch with the University and other graduates would afford opportunities throughout the students' lives.

“You never know – you could be anywhere in world and walk past someone wearing an Otago shirt,” she says.

Alex Bristol, a recipient of the John Falloon Memorial Scholarship and current second-year biomedical sciences student says receiving the scholarship was “incredibly helpful” for making the decision to move to Otago. Alex enjoyed his first year at UniCol residential college and was now flatting.

Receiving the scholarship has taken some of the financial pressure off his first year, he says.

Students at Wednesday’s event are supported by scholarships from a range of funds that are generously backed by University of Otago supporters and benefactors.

These include; the 2017 Alumni Annual Appeal, the Callis Performance Trust, the Donna Rose McKay Entrance Scholarship, the University of Otago Law Alumni Scholarship, the Elman Poole Southland Boys’ High School and Southland Girls’ High School Science and Music Scholarships, the R and E Seelye Academic Excellence Scholarship fund, the John Falloon Memorial Scholarship, the JF Ward Verdon College Undergraduate Entrance Scholarship, and the University of Otago Yarrow South Entrance Scholarship.

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Students help themselves to pizza before the welcome speech.

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Lee Withy and Liz Poole, niece of Dr Elman Poole, benefactor of the Poole Suite of Entrance Scholarships.

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Development and Alumni Relations Stewardship Officer Kellie Bain with John Falloon Scholarship recipient Alex Bristol with. (All images Sharron Bennett).