UC Bright Start scholarships

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Celebrate potential

The UC Bright Start Scholarship ensures that talented young people can access a University of Canterbury education, regardless of their financial background. The scholarship supports students from low decile schools, disadvantaged groups, single parent families, first generation to university and those from large families.

Cleo's story

“This scholarship reduced my level of financial stress entering my first year of university. This allowed me to become more efficient in my study, and raised my level of wellbeing.”

  • Cleo Vernon

    UC Bright Start scholar 2017

    Cleo Vernon

Cleo Vernon is a second year commerce student majoring in Economics and Operations and Supply Chain Management. She’s also studying Political Science and International Relations as part of her degree.

Born in Raglan, Cleo spent most of her life in small towns before moving to Christchurch. She believes education is purely what you make of it.

“No matter what the circumstances, it is all dependent on the amount of time and effort you put in to appreciate the full experience.” 

She says she chose to come to UC because she wanted more than just a quality education and degree. 

“UC offers inclusivity and opportunities. It has a club, sport, event or community for everyone and offers endless opportunities – from scholarships to seminars, extra-curricular activities and networking events”.

Cleo is the treasurer of the Thursdays in Black Society and is an active member in a number of clubs around campus promoting education and social welfare.

“UC has allowed me to gain volunteering experience and immerse myself in the culture Canterbury has to offer,” Cleo says.  

When she completes her degree, Cleo plans to do some postgraduate study. She would like to work in an environment where she can practice the skills and knowledge gained in her studies to make a large impact. 

“I’m interested in economic forecasting, policy making, management consulting or diplomacy,” she says.

“I see myself working for the New Zealand Treasury, Reserve Bank, a big accounting firm or in one of New Zealand’s overseas missions.”

Cleo is grateful to the generous donors who make the UC Bright Start Scholarship possible.

“Words cannot express how thankful I am for your kindness, empathy and generosity. Without this scholarship there would be a large chance that I would not have been able to move to Christchurch from the Waikato to fulfil my aspiration of attending this world-class university.”