“Thank you for believing in the potential of students and for investing in our future”

Scholarships with impact

Over recent months, dozens of current St Mark’s Collegians have again been writing letters of thanks for the scholarships that have helped them be at St Mark’s this year. In many cases, scholarships have made the difference between their being able to return or come to the College for 2024, or not.

The headline above is a quote from one such letter.

The letters from students generally express gratitude for the great opportunity to benefit from being at College, and for the kindness and generosity of donors. Many students speak powerfully of what being at St Mark’s means to them, and of the financial challenges which they and their family face, including the current cost of living and other economic pressures, and how much difference the scholarship support makes.

Inspiringly, many scholarship recipients also express the determination that, when they are able later in life, they will “give back” or “pay it forward” – doing what they can to help future generations of students to be at St Mark’s.

A great deal of our scholarships are funded by gifts from Old Collegians who are grateful for what their College experience did for them. Many others are funded by gifts from friends of the College who have seen how important and life-changing their support can be.

Donations to the College through Annual Giving are essential to our ability to provide this support, as are major gifts and bequests. Thanks to the generosity of the St Mark’s community, a number of new scholarships have been created in the last few years, and Annual Giving by alumni and friends funds several crucial scholarships each year.

One of the top priorities in the College’s strategic plan, Towards our second century, is “working to support all students who need it, and to promote excellence and diversity, through a major expansion of scholarships and other financial support for students”.

This week, the annual Scholarship Presentation Ceremonies will be held at the College. Here, scholarships are formally recognised and certificates are presented to scholarship winners by their donors. We also launch Annual Giving, which again seeks support for our students through gifts for scholarships, as well as for other College priorities.

Expressions of gratitude

These short extracts from the very many letters written by scholarship recipients reflect their gratitude for the great impact of the support they have received.

“St Mark’s will forever be a part of my life. I would not be the person I am today without the support, and opportunities for growth and success in all aspects of life. Thank you for believing in the potential of students like myself and for investing in our future.”

“Being part of the college community at St Mark’s provides me with a sense of belonging that I have never felt prior. 2023 spent at college was the best year of my life, I have made lifelong incredible friendships and learnt many new things about myself, others, and the journey of life. I couldn’t imagine myself being anywhere else.”

“From the bottom of our hearts, we are truly thankful and assure you that St Mark’s College will always hold a special place in each of our hearts. I hope to one day be able to provide assistance to another student in living their dream to stay at St Mark’s College just like I have been kindly provided with.”

“This opportunity has become a reality thanks to you!”

“Coming to St Marks is one of the best decisions I’ve made. We are all grateful for your support in allowing me to return to college for a second year.”

“It is a testament to the life you have led and the values that you hold that you should show such kindness to strangers and freely support their educational journeys. Thank you for your kindness and generosity in creating this tremendous opportunity not only for me, but also for the many others who will inevitably follow.”

“The impact of this scholarship extends beyond my academic journey; it has made a significant difference in my life and has eased the financial burden I feel I have placed on my family. Without this support, continuing my studies in Adelaide would have been a considerable challenge. I will be forever grateful for your generosity.”

“Your support fuels my determination to excel academically and actively engage in the vibrant community at St Mark’s. I am eager to immerse myself in the diverse academic and extracurricular activities offered at the college, knowing that your generosity has provided me with the means to fully participate and contribute to its rich tapestry of experiences.”

“This generous scholarship has not only alleviated the financial burden of pursuing higher education but has also served as a profound affirmation of my academic and personal achievements. Your belief in my potential has provided me with the encouragement and support needed to excel in my studies. College is not just an academic institution; it is a place where dreams are nurtured, and futures are shaped. The opportunities for growth, both intellectually and personally, are invaluable. Your scholarship has made it possible for me to fully immerse myself in this transformative experience. I am genuinely grateful for the faith you have shown in me, and I am committed to honouring your generosity through dedicated and impactful academic pursuits.”

“Your support is not forgotten and thought of regularly with much gratitude.”

“Living at St. Mark’s is a privilege that I never thought I would have. Having grown up in economic and family hardship, your patronage provides me with significant emotional and financial relief that truly makes or breaks the reality of me being a student at St. Mark’s. Thank you for believing in me.”

“Thank you for providing opportunity to those like myself to continue living at St Mark’s College with the hopes to become the best version of myself in all aspects of my academic and personal life.”

“Being a daughter of two hard working farmers whose income is very dependent on weather means that there is always major stress around financial needs. This scholarship has truly been a major blessing for my family and me, especially with the unfortunate harvest season my mum and dad have experienced this year. Without your kindness, my family would have found it much harder to provide me with an opportunity to receive higher education, which would have impacted the chances of me being able to stay. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to chase my dreams.”

“My parents and I are incredibly thankful for your donation of this scholarship as it has played a large role in helping me to attend St Mark’s College this year and hopefully in the years to come. I completed a gap year in 2023, working three jobs to accumulate savings to support my tertiary education. Such a generous scholarship goes a long way in assisting me with these costs.

“I am filled with gratitude for your generosity in awarding me this St Mark’s scholarship and look forward to the future opportunities that this will open for me.”

“Your generosity not only lightens the financial burden of my education but also validates my aspirations and reinforces my dedication to the field of nursing. With the support of this scholarship, I am better equipped to focus on my studies, engage in clinical experiences, and participate in the opportunities that St Mark’s has to offer. Your dedication to supporting aspiring nurses, like myself, reflects a shared commitment to excellence, integrity, and service to humanity. I am looking forward to personally thanking you for your kind scholarship and will work diligently this year to ensure I have made you proud.”

“Without scholarships, my residence at St Mark’s would be called into question.”

“Being from a farming family, the expense of living away from home was always scary to think about and try to budget for as our family’s income is constantly changing. My family has made many sacrifices to ensure I can be comfortable while studying and have never once wavered in their support towards me even when it has put pressure on them. Your help through this scholarship means a great amount to my family, and more so to myself as it allows me to continue making the most of the opportunities that arise while living at St Mark’s and in Adelaide.”

“Receiving this scholarship means more to me than words can convey. It is not only financial assistance but also a tremendous vote of confidence in my abilities and aspirations. Your belief in my potential has inspired me to work even harder towards my academic and career goals. Enrolling at St Marks has been a profoundly transformative experience for me, one that extends far beyond the academic realm. It has been a place where I have and will continue to make lifelong connections and it will always have a special place in my heart.”

“I am grateful for every moment I get to spend here. I am truly humbled by your generosity.”

“This scholarship you have kindly presented has allowed me to continue my college journey, which may not have gone ahead otherwise.”

“I have marvelled at the opportunities that I have been able to seize, the people that have shifted from acquaintance to family, and the way a new place can quickly become a home. It is due to your generosity that this is possible.”

If you would like to help change the lives of current or future students at St Mark’s, please give now at the link here.

For details of College scholarships, click here.