What’s the application like?
The program keeps broadening the number of students that they can take in. In my year about 82 students got it from about 170 applications.
There are three stages to receiving the scholarship. After I was nominated I got an email with an application process that asked about the leadership skills I have, about the adversity I’m facing, and other things like that.
After every stage I found out if I was shortlisted to keep going with the application process.
Because of Covid, we didn’t have to do the second stage – which is an IQ test. I was happy not to take the IQ test, but I knew it meant that the next stage, the interview, would be crucial.
There were people from the Skyline Foundation,my school coordinator and me at the interview. They asked me a few questions, I think to see how I respond to social and political issues in the world. I guess to see how I might think about things broadly.
My first question was something along the lines of what’s the difference between living and existing? Which I wasn’t really expecting – it was so deep!
A month later my year 10 coordinator came up to me when I was playing around the basketball court. She told me to go check my emails (with a poker face on, not giving anything away). Then the first thing on the email was a big CONGRATULATIONS!
I’m so thankful to be part of Skyline, because now that I’m in the program I can see why it’s so helpful.
What’s the program like?
All the people in the program started with an orientation day, where they told us how it’s helped students in the past. Students have gone on to become things like surgeons or CEOs of large companies.
They cover the cost of all our textbooks, stationary and all that sort of school stuff. Which is so handy, because it does cost a lot to get school books, calculators and everything else. I was able to get study guides and other resources that would help me get through VCE.
Then, every term we have master classes. The last one I went to was a day long and it was all about motivation. We did a comprehensive motivation survey. That was really good, it showed videos about why we should be motivated and things like that. After that we looked at results in the masterclass, and found out why some people got certain results, and what actually motivates us as individuals.
The day was really good. It opened people’s eyes to careers that they didn’t know existed or that they didn’t think about for their future. They were also going to drive us to Monash University for a tour and introduction to the uni but that couldn’t happen because of the lockdown.
Some of the regular support they give is through tutoring classes that are run by students who excelled in a subject themselves. They’re usually second or third year uni students, so they did year 12 pretty recently. These tutoring classes happen every week, and go for an hour. We also can have 15 minutes one on one with the tutors if we need it.
Yes, you should apply
I definitely recommend everyone should apply – because it’s a self nomination process. And apply even if you don’t know if you’re eligible because at least you’ll find out why you didn’t get it. I definitely think everyone should have a go, because growing up rural does mean we face some adversity in education.
For anyone in year 10, the first thing I would say is have your eyes and ears open. I went through year 10 twice, and the first time I was in year 10, I hadn’t heard about any of these kinds of programs. But when I came back to year 10 after my injury I kept my ears open for things like this.
Everyone should have a go at applying, because you don’t really know what these programs are looking for, or if you meet the criteria. Be honest in your application because you might not even realise the things that are affecting your experience of education.