In summary

  • Neda Alemzadeh is part of the Welcome Scholarship cohort graduating this year, earning a Bachelor of Design (Architecture)
  • Welcome Scholarships were introduced in 2017 to provide tertiary education to asylum seekers and refugees living in Australia
  • Neda has secured a graduate position at Rail Projects Victoria

Swinburne Architecture student, Neda Alemzadeh, is one of the many successful recipients of the Welcome Scholarship Program.

Neda received a scholarship for her contribution to the community and demonstration of leadership potential. Recipients are eligible to study undergraduate, certificate, UniLink, and Diploma/Advanced Diploma courses.

In July 2017, Neda commenced her studies at Swinburne undertaking a Bachelor of Interior Architecture. Excelling in her studies, she transferred to a Bachelor of Design (Architecture) in 2018 and is now planning to graduate at the end of 2020.

“It is a privilege for me to have the chance to study at Swinburne,” Neda says.

New horizons

Prior to moving to Australia in 2013, Neda had studied architecture in Iran at the Eram University of Shiraz.

After relocating to Adelaide, Neda dedicated her time to volunteering full-time for two years with organisations including The Red Cross, St Vincent’s Hospital, The Heart Foundation, and World Vision.

“I felt that this would allow me to help my community and it could also help me to improve my English language,” she says.

Neda maintained her goal to return to her studies, continuing applications for various scholarships and universities across Australia to study architecture.

“When I received the offer from Swinburne I could not believe it. It was like a miracle for me.”

Transferring skills to industry experience

Neda has been recognised as a Swinburne Emerging Leader – a program that acknowledges activities including campus participation, career development and community engagement and research.

“I have met a lot of lovely people from different backgrounds and nationalities at Swinburne who helped me through my journey through personal and professional growth," Neda says.

Neda has secured a graduate position with Rail Projects Victoria after her summer internship with the company through CareerSeekers.

Highlights of Neda’s time at Swinburne include undertaking diverse projects in studio and workshop environments, and learning how structures are modelled and designed.

“In my second year we used a combination of fly ash and coffee grounds in combination with some other materials to make sustainable bricks, it was a great experience and experiment.”

The next step

After securing a summer internship through CareerSeekers at Rail Projects Victoria, Neda has been accepted into a graduate position with the Major Transport Infrastructure Authority.

She has signed a two-year contract with Rail Projects Victoria and will commence her work with the Land, Planning and Environment team in February 2021.

After graduation, Neda hopes to gain industry experience and eventually return to study to complete a Master of Architecture to become a registered architect.

“The ability to be back at university and continuing my studies has completely changed my life. I would like to give a special thanks to Sue Oldham and Swinburne,” Neda says.

The Swinburne Welcome Scholarships are now open, and applications will close on Monday 19 October 2020. 

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