Amrita Kharel was a recipient of Swinburne's Welcome Scholarship in 2017

Tom Leather

Following his dreams

Tom Leather overcame hardship and followed his dreams thanks to a Student Achievement Award established by Ms Lorri Beer and her husband Ian.

In 2016, Tom was one of the recipients of the inaugural Edyth Rawson PAVE Student Achievement Award. He was extremely grateful to receive the award for all the hard work he had put into his Diploma of Conservation and Land Management over the last two years.

“After having a major accident I experienced a few difficulties, but it did have one positive effect - the thump to my head made me realise I needed a career change to something I cared about and something that could impact future generations in a positive way,” Tom says as he now looks towards the future.

“I aim to have a career in the environmental industry (preferably as a ranger). I want to reduce and in the long-run prevent damage to the natural environment.

My health issues created barriers that I thought would prevent me from reaching my goal. The award gave me a jolt of self-confidence after my accident and has helped to restore my positive outlook. It has been a mental and financial springboard for me to overcome the difficulties I faced in achieving my goals of completing my degree, entering the industry and living a rewarding life, where I can see the positive results of my work.

It's great to know that there are people out there who want to support students like me.”

The award was created in loving memory of Lorri’s aunt, Edyth Rawson. It recognises that some of the most driven and dedicated students sometimes need support and encouragement to achieve greatness and follow their dreams.

Find out more about supporting students like Tom.

Tom Leather, Edyth Rawson Student Achievement Award winner

The award has been a mental and financial springboard for me to overcome the difficulties I faced

Tom Leather, Edyth Rawson Student Achievement Award winner