Easing the pressure valve of life.

Lou Warwick is Bachelor of Building Design student at CQUniversity. Following a workplace accident, and with the support of her lecturer, Lou applied and received a CQUniCares Emergency Grant to help her overcome the obstacles she was facing.

Earlier this year, Lou was also awarded a CQUniCares Appeal Scholarship, made possible by generous alumni, staff, students and friends of the University who supported the 2018 CQUniCares Annual Appeal.

My story

I never expected this.

It has been a turnaround from being a Registered Nurse to studying a Bachelor of Building Design. Although it has been something of a dream since I left high school many years ago, it was the freedom to choose where I wanted to be in life and the support of friends and family that helped me make the change.

When I gained my first Bachelor’s degree, I was the first in a long family line to study at University; this will gladly be my second degree. This is an important notion that I can pass down to my children, as a good education is more than a piece of paper, it is a lit pathway to deeper and greater knowledge.

Studying online, part time made it easy for me to work, be a parent and continue to improve myself. CQUni’s web interface helped me pick up the pace quickly after being out of university for so long. My favourite classes have been maths and design-based ones, history was a surprise favourite too.

Since beginning my journey with CQUniversity, I came into a difficult situation where I was injured at work. I could no longer write, turn a page or hold a mouse without pain. I considered deferring my education. However, I stuck with it and continued. Changed my desk set up, wrote left handed (terribly) and found alternatives to help me study. It kept my brain working and gave me self-satisfaction while I continue to heal.

The support of a CQUniCares Emergency Grant

I spoke to one of my lecturers about the difficulty I was having. That I was about to become unemployed and unable to access benefits. She said that I should apply for a CQUniCares Emergency Grant. I’d never done that before, never thought I would be successful. My lecturer could see the me that I couldn’t. A student that she didn’t want to lose. So, I applied in a hurry, as I only had a few days.

The morning I found out that I was successful, I had been on a rather stressful call, to have the phone ring before I had chance to put it down. I thought to myself “Oh boy! Who could this be now?” When I answered, it was a happy voice. She introduced herself as Rachel from CQUniversity. I took my first sigh of relief as she continued to announce that my application was successful. Then I did a little happy dance.

First thing I did was tell my partner which gave great relief, as they have been supporting me. Second thing was to buy the books I needed for the next semester as I didn’t need to use our food money for them. Third was pay my Student Services and Amenities Fee so I could stay in my classes.

This grant has eased the pressure valve of life and allowed me to continue my studies. I am ever so grateful of receiving such a gift and wish to return the gift when I am able in the future. It is a very important resource that needs to be maintained.

The support of a CQUniCares Appeal Scholarship…

Soon after the books and fees were paid for and I thought I was in the clear, my faithful laptop had a fatal error display on the screen. Ok, I can fix this, sure it’s old, but it’s never given me trouble before. Three hours later, my laptop was up and running again. I quickly backed up everything. Phew, tragedy averted!

News came that I was now in receipt of a CQUniCares Appeal Scholarship, so I was over the moon. I had never received one before and decided to use it only for study purposes. It sat there quietly, used for paper, ink and the odd CPD session run by the local Building Design Association (a great way to get to know products and people in the industry). 

Weeks passed and my laptop was starting to show signs of difficulty. I was now spending more time repairing and fault finding my laptop than studying. I was putting off the inevitable. Still, I couldn’t risk a full rebuild of my only computer until semester break. In the end, it was like playing Russian roulette with the laptop’s memory and irregular backups of assignments, I had to relent, I had to buy a new laptop.

It was money I didn’t want to spend, I wanted to keep it as long as possible. However, that’s what it was there for and I am ever so grateful it was. No laptop = no studies. Thankfully, the new laptop is going well, and the second part of the scholarship is still there, serving its purpose for books and the little things. Such a relief.

From September 9 – 20, CQUniversity will launch its annual fundraising appeal. Aimed at raising funds to support students through CQUniCares Emergency Grants and Scholarships, we’re calling on our community to join us in making a donation. 100% of your tax deductible donation directly benefits students, making a real difference in their lives and those around them.  

Plus, by donating during the first week of appeal, your gift will be matched thanks to the Scott Williams Foundation.

cqunilifeguest (https://cqunilife.com)

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