Building a future
When Renee Miller-Yeaman was awarded the Future Generations Scholarship in tandem with a Graduate Access Scholarship in 2010, she was part of a first intake of the new Master of Architecture at the Melbourne School of Design. Renee’s exceptional progress had seen her graduate with first class honours in her Bachelor of Fine Arts at the Victorian College of Arts, but this new, intensive course was a whole new challenge.
“A Master of Architecture is a very time-consuming degree due to the breadth and depth of knowledge needed to undertake design studios,” she said. “The Masters coursework program is made up of Design Studios, where each semester I produced an architectural-based design project and I also undertook construction subjects and history/theory subjects.”
Since its inception in 2007, the Future Generations Scholarship has had over 3,200 donors who have supported 125 students across every faculty at the University. The scholarship and financial aid allowed Renee to concentrate on her studies without having to work part-time, as well as gain the software skills she needed by taking a course outside the University. “It also meant I could begin establishing an architectural library of my own and have immediate access to a range of materials and equipment to produce architectural models which helped further my understanding of design,” Renee said.
When undertaking a design studio there are high printing costs and the scholarship helped me to afford this crucial part of the degree.
"Together, these elements helped me foster a better understanding of both the design process and what actual areas of architecture I was interested in.” The scholarship was an integral part in Renee’s ability to achieve first class honours in her Masters and move to the next phase in her academic journey – a PhD at the Melbourne School of Design, which is due for completion in 2019. “Pragmatically, it helped me produce a higher overall grade average at the end of my Master degree and this helped me to gain a scholarship to undertake my PhD, which has consequently provided me both work and travel opportunities.”
Renee is also using what she has learned to teach others at Melbourne’s Faculty of Architecture, Building and Planning. She is currently the senior tutor teaching the ‘21st Century Architecture’ course.
Her positive experiences mean Renee highly recommends students apply for the scholarship. “It helps to take the pressure off having to work part-time simultaneously while you study, and you can concentrate your time and efforts on your degree.”
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