The new scholarship builds on many years of collaboration between Flinders and CBS Inc., a not-for-profit organisation that provides employment, recreation and personal development support for people with disability.
CBS Inc. also helps Flinders students find graduate employment opportunities in their chosen field through the federal government funded University Specialist Employment Partnership.
Freddie Brincat OAM, who founded CBS Inc. in 1996, says his organisation’s additional support through this scholarship provides valuable financial help, but also shines a light on difficulties students with disability face, and broadens discussions about how best to move forward so that they can achieve their potential.
“I am constantly amazed by the motivation of people with disability, but there can be many barriers ahead to achieve what they want,” says Freddie.
“This is where CBS Inc. provides help, and our partnership with Flinders University is a very important part of building their confidence to attend university and to succeed.”
Freddie believes the pathway through higher education for people with disability needs to be made more accessible, so they can realise their ambitions.
“The new scholarship helps to highlight people with great talent who have a disability, and to show that when they have access to greater resources it creates a huge, positive difference in their lives.”
With the scholarship funds Leilani has been able to purchase equipment and resources to address organisational, sensory and emotional needs. This is helping them navigate daily life and feel better equipped to study.
“The scholarship has been an extraordinary support for me and has left me with a feeling of professional capability,” says Leilani.
“I want to express my gratitude to CBS Inc. for their innovative decision to fund a scholarship for students with disability at Flinders.”
Leilani is also excited that as a result of the support they now have the capacity and confidence to join the Flinders Neurodiversity Study Support and Advocacy group.
Freddie is impressed by the positive impact the scholarship has already had on Leilani’s life, but knows there is an even bigger picture and long-term benefits to removing barriers for students with disability.
“I’m proud that a small not-for-profit organisation such as CBS Inc. has taken the lead with this important initiative, but I would now like to see larger corporations join with us,” says Freddie.
“As more people with disability obtain access to university, we will see them become future leaders of this country.”