The Barbara Wright Memorial Scholarship for Post Graduate women was presented by Harvey Wright on Saturday night to Taneile Kitchingman, the first Cowra woman to receive this prestigious award.
Taneile is the daughter of David and Kerrie Kitchingman and was educated at Cowra High School before commencing a Bachelor of Psychology at the University of Wollongong. She is now enrolled in a Ph D course in Clinical Psychology researching the effects and effectiveness of telephone counselling services. She will be collaborating with Lifeline and On the Line in studying how telephone counsellors are affected by their frequent calls with distressed people.
Taneile's interest in this field of study came about after conversations with country doctors during the drought years and then by becoming a Lifeline counsellor herself. Her ambition on completing her PhD is to use her knowledge to support the wellbeing of rural Australians.
It was wonderful to hear such a worthy recipient of this award address the guests at the dinner. Equally impressive was the AFGW Central Branch HSC Scholarship winner Annabelle Carter from Orange who in thanking the committee for her award spoke of her future studying Bachelor of Music with Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery at the University of Sydney.
Sue Brown introduced Annabelle who gained an ATAR of 99.80 and was the highest placed student in the Central West. Annabelle's school career was one of distinction in all facets of school life. In Music she took part in the Australian Youth Orchestra National Music camps and the Australian Youth Orchestra as a violinist.
She was awarded prizes for Mathematics, Chemistry as well as Music and was a prefect at Kinross Wolaroi before being recognised as Dux in 2013.
The previous winner of this scholarship , Nicola Ball was present at the dinner to congratulate this years awardee after a year in Germany as a Rotary Exchange student. Nicola is studying Medicine at the University of NSW with the hope of specialising in Paediatrics and returning to the country to practice.
The guest speaker for the night was Elizabeth Gordon who had spent several years in Abu Dhabi as the Australian trade commissioner before retiring to follow her dream of enabling young women to achieve their full potential and to concentrate on being a mother and a wife.
She spoke of her role in the UAE and of the women she had met in leadership roles there- in particular the UAE Minister for Trade, Sheikha Lubha, who had a most outgoing personality with a keen sense of humour. Elizabeth stated that she had met with no obvious discrimination and was not seen as a threat but more as a person who needed assistance in this heirarchical male dominated paternalistic environment of the Emirates. This actually helped open doors for Australians there.
While Elizabeth has not been subject to discrimination she has seen some women experience it both home and abroad . Her address was enlightening and very interesting and in thanking her Jean Mary Fagan congratulated her on her wonderful achievements.
President Anne Holloway thanked all for their attendance, wished the Scholarship winners every success and looked forward to seeing everyone at future dinners in 2014.
-Australian Federation of Graduate Women