Applications are open for local youth eager to pursue tertiary education.
The Gunnedah Community Scholarship Fund (GCSF) is an initiative of the community and provides financial support for local youth choosing to further their studies.
The scholarships cover many disciplines for students who travel away to study at university or apply for traineeships or apprenticeships locally.
In 2018, 24 youth received funds, including Laura Watterson who is studying a Bachelor of Paramedicine at Charles Sturt University in Bathurst.
Ms Watterson said she used some of the funds to purchase a uniform, which she has to wear during her degree.
"That can cost $300 to $600, and the scholarship was a massive help in that aspect, as well as for accommodation, textbooks and just the cost of living," she said.
"We are just so lucky. We don't have a university in Gunnedah and this helps us with the opportunity to get a degree."
GCSF working group chairwoman Gae Swain said by helping youth today, it may benefit the town in the future.
"It is wonderful that they can be supported on this part of their journey by their home town," she said.
The fund is financed by local businesses and Mrs Swain said this sponsorship was imperative.
"Without the support of local businesses and groups, these students would not have the benefit of this financial help," she said.
"We already have some great supporters on board, but we are in need of a few more.
"If your group or business has not sponsored the community scholarship before, there is still time to get involved in what is a very fulfilling program."
GCSF is open to students under 25 who have completed their secondary or tertiary preparation studies within a 100km radius of Gunnedah and whose family's principle place of residence is within Gunnedah shire. They must have been accepted into an approved tertiary course (minimum Certificate IV).
- For the full eligibility conditions and to apply, visit gsc2380.wufoo.com/forms/ztvv0nm1epq9m6 or Gunnedah Shire Council's website: www.gunnedah.nsw.gov.au
- Applications close on December 15, 2019
- Business, groups or individuals who would like to become a sponsor can contact the council youth development officer Ellen Valler on 6740 2100.