Bachelor of Engineering (Mechanical and Space)
Winning the prestigious $6000-per-annum Group of Eight (Go8) scholarship in 2005 has made a big difference to university study for second-year UQ Bachelor of Engineering student Javier Navarro.
Just four Go8 scholarships are awarded each year by each of the Go8 universities on the bases of financial hardship as well as academic excellence.
The Go8 represents Australia's leading universities, conducting the vast majority of Australian university research; UQ is the only Go8 university in Queensland.
Javier emigrated from Peru to the Gold Coast with his parents and siblings in 2001. He achieved an Overall Position (OP) 1 for his studies at Palm Beach/Currumbin School. HIs achievements are even more remarkable considering that he was aged 14, with limited English, at the time he emigrated.
He said he had been "very happy and relieved" when he received the letter informaing him that he had been successful in gaining the scholarship.
"The scholarship helps me with expenses such as my books - about $800 a semester - as well as rent," he said. "I have also been able to travel back to visit family in Peru, which will more easily enable me to settle in for another year at UQ."
An avid surfer, Javier returns each weekend to stay with his family on the Gold Coast as well as catch some breaks at Snapper Rocks and other spots.
He said he chose UQ because it was "the best university" and was where his older sister Alessandra, who is studying towards a dual Bachelor of Business Management/Bachelor of Laws, was also studying.
"It would have been easier for me to select a university or campus on the Gold Coast as I did not want to have to move out of home, but I didn't like what was being offered. In addition, all of my teachers recommended UQ" he said.