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Miriam Grundy: Mary Dillon Inspire Scholarship recipient

Mary Dillon bequest: encouraging young women to pursue higher education.

This scholarship has given me the ongoing confidence, drive and opportunity to pursue my goals, and for that I am truly grateful.

Miriam Grundy is a recipient of the Mary Dillon Inspire Scholarship, established through the bequest of Miss Mary Dillon. This scholarship assists and encourages female students from regional and remote areas of Western Australia to undertake undergraduate studies at UWA.

The scholarship has allowed Miriam to move from Geraldton and live at University Hall while she studies a Bachelor of Science, majoring in Population Health.

Miriam is passionate about her chosen field of study, especially in the area of social inequality. In her first year, she received the Prize for Excellence in Public Health for having the highest overall mark and credits her achievement to be surrounded by a supportive and academic environment.

I don't believe that much of what I have achieved so far at UWA would have been possible without the Mary Dillon Inspire Scholarship. It has been an amazing experience. I have made many new friends and great memories, and have had countless volunteering, academic and leadership opportunities to expand my career prospects."

Living on campus has opened up opportunities for Miriam to volunteer with the WA Aids Council and UWA, and participate in Relay for Life UWA, "which was a memorable and rewarding experience. I hope to continue giving back to my community and to inspire regional students to consider and pursue a university education."

"While I am moving out of college next year, the friends and experiences I have made have shaped me. This scholarship has given me the ongoing confidence, drive and opportunity to pursue my goals, and for that, I am truly grateful."

Who was Mary Dillon?

Mary Dillon in academic dress. 

Mary Dillon (1921–2013) was born and grew up in Kalgoorlie. She was the first in her family to attend university, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts (Economics and History). She was one of the first women to graduate in Economics from UWA.

After graduating, Mary moved to Sydney. She returned to Perth in the late 1950s, where she initially worked for Foy and Gibson in the accounts department, going on to become a schoolteacher.

In her retirement, Mary was a suburban activist in Mosman Park, fighting and winning battles to stop overdevelopment of the area and preserve native bush, including as Secretary of the Buckland Hill Action Group. She is remembered for her longstanding commitment to the area, with the Council naming a pergola and plaque in her memory.

Mary never forgot that her time at UWA was her springboard for an independent, fulfilling working life. Passionate about the value of education, she left a substantial proportion of her estate to UWA to fulfil her wish of providing scholarships for female students from regional and remote areas, who would otherwise struggle to find the means to move to Perth to study full time.

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