For years Scott Byrne had a longing to become a Nurse; but as a stay at home Dad in a rural community he never found the right time to complete the Diploma.
It was only when he applied for a TAFE Queensland Scholarship that studying seemed possible and fortunately he was one of 14 recipients across the State who received a scholarship to commence student in Semester 2, 2016.
Mr Byrne, who is now studying a Diploma of Nursing online through TAFE Queensland Gold Coast said the $5,000 scholarship has been life changing.
"I feel the financial burden has been lifted," Mr Byrne said.
"This money will allow us to pay for child care expenses while I attend residential school as well as provide funds for travel expenses and textbooks."
Upon graduating, Mr Byrne hopes to work with remote indigenous communities in the outback.
Year 12 High School student, Perri Elliott, was the other Gold Coaster awarded a scholarship in the latest round of recipients.
"This scholarship has given me the opportunity to study the Certificate IV in Allied Health Assistance while completing my senior studies, which will put me ahead of my peers when I start job hunting next year, Mr Elliott said.
"I have a passion for health and I have very clear career goals; I knew that TAFE Queensland could get me to where I wanted to be, so I followed my desire and was lucky enough to receive a scholarship to fund my dream."
TAFE Queensland Gold Coast General Manager, Jenny Dodd, said it was fantastic to see students like Scott and Perri making the most of the scholarship program.
"These scholarships provide an opportunity for people throughout Queensland to develop their skills and gain a qualification," Ms Dodd said.
"I encourage anyone looking to start their career or make a career change to apply."
The $800,000 TAFE Queensland scholarship program is the largest vocational education bursary in Australia
TAFE Queensland CEO Jodi Schmidt said the scholarships were already helping more than 90 Queenslanders to pursue their career goals by providing some added financial support so they can focus on their studies.
"We want our students to be able to maximize their time at TAFE Queensland learning the skills and gaining the knowledge they need to succeed in their chosen field," Ms Schmidt said.
"These scholarships allow students to do just that by helping them meet costs associated with study including course fees, books and study materials, or to reduce the cost of living expenses."
Scholarship winners have the choice to study TAFE Queensland qualifications from Certificate III to Advanced Diploma level.
The scholarships are awarded to students who are committed to studying qualifications in specific industries including business services, construction skills, electrotechnology, automotive, engineering, hairdressing, beauty services, health services, nursing, community services, horticulture, hospitality, tourism, marine studies and event management.
For more information or to apply for a TAFE Queensland Scholarship visit scholarships.tafeqld.edu.au