Mildura RSL offers new scholarship

Mildura RSL is offering a generous new scholarship to a La Trobe University student of Koori descent.  This is the second scholarship the Mildura RSL has offered to local students studying education. 

A young Ken Stewart in Military portrait ‘The annual scholarships, worth $2000 each, are extremely generous and students commencing their Education degree have the opportunity to apply,’ said Debbie Neal, Campus Coordinator for Education at La Trobe University Mildura.

The Mildura RSL Kenneth (Ken) Wallace Stewart Aboriginal or Torres Straight Islander Education Scholarship, is named after a former Robinvale RSL member known as a ‘quiet achiever’ who invested 57 years of service to the RSL and local community.  

Kim Archibald, the Secretary Manager of the Mildura RSL said it was a fitting tribute to have a scholarship named after Mr Stewart, himself of Koori origin, who saw active military service in Egypt, Greece, Syria, New Guinea and Borneo before being discharged on 9th September 1945.

Prior to that, he completed three years in the Militia (C.M.F) before joining the regular army in 1940 at the age of 22 . He was allocated a Soldier Settlement block in Robinvale in 1950, where he lived until his death in 2002. 

Applicants must be of a first year Education student at La Trobe University’s Mildura campus and be of Koori decent. Another key criterion of eligibility is that the applicant must either be a spouse of, or have had direct involvement with the Australian Armed Services, or descendent of a Veteran (child or grandchild).

Mr Kent Farrell, Campus Director at La Trobe University’s Mildura campus, said he was thankful to Mildura RSL for its extraordinary generosity.

‘$2000 is a significant amount of money and will help a student concentrate on their studies and help reduce the financial concerns that they might otherwise have to deal with,’ he said.

‘The Mildura RSL already offers a La Trobe student a $2000 scholarship, and this new scholarship is a most welcome addition and  a much-needed investment into Koori education in the region, and the overall educational future of Mildura,’ he added.

Mr Stewart was particularly passionate about the welfare of the Mildura and Robinvale, and he served on the Robinvale RSL Welfare Board until a few months before his passing.

Ken Stewart was a life member of the National RSL, in 1999 he was presented with the RSL’s highest honour bestowed on a civilian, the Meritorious Award with Gold Badge for his services to the RSL.

Ken was a member of the 24th District Board for over 40 years, the Board provided crucial  representation of Country R.S.L.’s at a State level.

The Mildura RSL Kenneth (Ken) Wallace Stewart Aboriginal or Torres Straight Islander Education Scholarship is a fitting tribute to a man who was genuinely committed to helping others and will be a boost to Koori education in Mildura.

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