When Shane Chandra got to the end of his Arts degree in Perth he knew that he wanted to do more. He also knew he wanted a change of scene. “I was intent on undertaking further study. I wanted to focus my energy on a specific goal.
“What drives me is the knowledge that I may have some potential in a field, the inquisitiveness to explore how far that potential extends, and the desire to avoid looking back and wondering what could have been.”
He was offered a place in the Melbourne Juris Doctor (JD) and moved to Melbourne straight away. “My parents were pleasantly surprised and very proud when I received the news. They knew how hard I’d worked to get in.”
What happened next really surprised Shane – he found out that he’d been selected as a recipient of the Zelman Cowen scholarship. “I wasn’t expecting any other correspondence from Melbourne after I got the offer, so when I was told that I’d received a scholarship it was an exciting bonus. It gave me the confidence to do well.”
The Zelman Cowen scholarship, named after one of the Law School’s longest serving Deans and former Governor General, is offered to applicants around Australia with a strong academic background. It provides recipients with financial support during their JD to help with relocation and living expenses.
Since moving to Melbourne at the beginning of the year, Shane has been able to focus on his studies without the worry of holding down a part-time job. “It’s been such a relief,” he said. “I heard from some of my older friends that if you can avoid working in first semester to get settled, it’s a good idea. The scholarship has allowed me to do that.
“The course is even better than I’d hoped. The lecturers have been excellent and engaging. The material is well structured. But the standout for me has been the level of intelligence and friendliness within the student community.
“I would like to say thanks to my donor for being so generous. I strongly believe that there should be more opportunities like this for talented students to access the University, regardless of their background.”