I am a 22-year-old Wadjuk Noongar woman born and raised in Boorloo (Perth), with family connections to Ballardong country and Mineng country. I am very grateful to receive the Dr Tracy Westerman Scholarship, as I believe in her vision and to be involved in this process is a huge achievement, incredibly rewarding and humbling. The scholarship has assisted me financially and enabled me to pay everyday expenses, living expenses, university fees and incidentals. I am indebted to Dr Tracy Westerman and this inspires me in my studies, and further assists me in my goals as a School Psychologist.
Upon graduation I hope to become a qualified School Psychologist due to being concerned for the mental health of Aboriginal youth. The wellbeing gap between Aboriginal youth and non-Aboriginal youth is evident at every stage of their development. This is reflected in measures such as infant mortality rates, preparedness for schooling, educational achievement, contact with the justice system and hospitalisation. For children and young people, mental health is profound in its importance –not only because it is the key to a rich enjoyment of childhood and adolescence, but also because it provides the foundation for a resilient and mentally healthy adulthood. I believe that my Aboriginality, understanding and knowledge of culture, and compassionate and positive manner will assist in helping Aboriginal students and families.