Scholarship Success

31 October 2023

A new nurse has joined local hospital wards after being supported by a Community Bank Samford Scholarship. The inspirational Mheemhar Kennedy was driven to become a nurse in order to help others, but faced sudden financial hurdles in the midst of completing her University of the Sunshine Coast degree.

After losing her job during COVID lockdowns, Mheemhar needed to continue providing for herself and her autistic son, as well as finding ways to keep studying towards her dream career.

“The Community Bank Samford Scholarship helped me so much. I remember COVID was still prevalent at that time. I lost my job because of COVID and was separated from my partner. I struggled financially because I had to live on my own without a job and needed to provide support to my child who has autism, pay my tuition fees, and pay the bills,” she said.

“The scholarship helped me pay my tuition to continue with my study and I am truly thankful to the Community Bank Samford for choosing me as one of the scholars.”

Mheemhar’s son has been a source of inspiration for her to become a nurse; an occupation where she could learn more about his condition and use that knowledge to help others similarly diagnosed with autism.

“I enjoy the complexity of the human body and learning how each body system works, especially when homeostasis of the human body is not maintained,” she said.

“I wanted to become a nurse because of the desire to know the science behind autism as my son was diagnosed with level two and level three autism. Nursing involves research, wherein studies on autism are consistently conducted including its causes, etymology, interventions and possible treatments. This gives me hope and joy, learning that research on autism is ongoing to find efficient interventions that could help address diagnosis to make people’s lives better.”

Mheemhar was extremely grateful to receive a scholarship which came at a crucial time during her Bachelor of Nursing Science journey.

“I was ecstatic when I received the email of confirmation of my scholarship. I think that was the best gift I received during that time when I thought all hope was gone,” she said.

“The scholarship offered by the Community Bank Samford actually saved me and my son in so many ways, so thank you so much.”

After experiencing this relief of financial burdens during her studies, Mheemhar is keen for others in similar situations to also benefit from scholarship programs, which enable students to remain enrolled in their course despite life obstacles they may experience along the way.

“I just want to say, please keep this scholarship program. This program provides a massive help to someone who is in need of financial help to be able to achieve their dreams in life.”

Mheemhar Kennedy in her graduating cap and gown against a blue wall with UniSC behind her.

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