The Crescent Foundation and Western Sydney University (WSU) have joined forces and launched a new scholarship program to support high-achieving refugee students.
Driven by a shared vision to assist refugees and provide life-changing educational opportunities, the Crescent Foundation will offer the scholarships to students who have been granted permanent humanitarian visas in the past five years.
The Crescent Foundation Leadership Scholarships are valued at $7500 per year for three years.
In 2017, three scholarships will be offered to students studying across the full range of courses offered by WSU, with scope to expand the program over time.
In addition, further support from the community will be sought to fund at least an extra 20 scholarships under the program.
Vice-Chancellor Professor Barney Glover says WSU is pleased to be able to provide practical assistance to those who are making a new start in Australia.
“We know the powerful role that higher education plays in transforming people’s lives, and the positive flow-on effects this has for their families and wider communities,” he said.
“Many refugees who are new to Australia have had their education disrupted through war and violence. We are pleased to partner with the Crescent Foundation to establish these scholarships to help students continue their studies and realise their potential.”
Director of the Crescent Foundation, Talal Yassine said driving educational opportunity was essential to supporting refugees to best integrate into Australian life.
“Crescent Foundation believes that education is the single most important factor that can assist recently arrived Australians in a caring and nurturing environment to be the best they can be, to thrive, succeed and contribute to the social, economic and academic fabric of our nation,” Mr Yassine said.
“Crescent Foundation has embarked on this journey with a vision of providing a sustainable, positive and real impact on the lives of refugees, partnering with the prestigious WSU to support the less privileged and those struggling to afford a formal education.”
“The Foundation is delighted to offer Crescent Foundation Leadership Scholarships, a life-changing opportunity for students who otherwise would not have access to education.”
The new scholarships add to the University’s existing programs to support refugees, including Western Sydney College Refugee Scholarships, the Joan Reid Scholarship for Refugee Women, and the landmark Refugee Scholarship Fund.
“We invite the community to contact us to learn more about how they can support these scholarships,” Mr Yassine added.