Annalise Awarded EJ Connellan Award

Annalise Pearce at her Graduation in 2020 with her parents

Congratulations to 2020 graduate Annalise Pearce, who was recently awarded the EJ Connellan Award. We did a Q& A with Annalise to find out more about her award and what this means to her.

 What is the scholarship you’ve won?

I have won the EJ Connellan Award. The award is given out by the Connellan Airways Trust which has been supporting people in the outback for nearly 40 years. The actual award honours the founder who established the Connellan Airways airline. When it sold, a  trust was started to keep helping remote people. The scholarship is $20,000 over four years to contribute to the living expenses involved with relocating for education.

How did you find out about the Scholarship?

The award was advertised in our local newspaper in Kununurra. I found that most of the current scholarships around were for students going into STEM and I struggled to find one I was eligible for. The award provides an opportunity for people living in isolated and rural outback Australia to undertake study, research or invention not otherwise readily available to them due to location.

What does this scholarship mean for you?

The scholarship allows me to study law in Perth. I grew up in Kununurra and that 3000km distance can get really hard when you’re on your own living down here. Without the stress of money, I can focus on my degree and being a full-time student.

Tell us how your time at Santa Maria has shaped your passion for Social Justice?

Santa Maria really is an amazing school. I have some of my greatest friends and best experiences from my time at school. The education I received is what drives my passion for social justice. No other student I am friends with had the quality of education that was delivered at Santa Maria. The teachers were all passionate and it’s hard not to value education when you’re engaged in the class. They discussed real-world issues with us, and we were taught to not be ignorant of the world around us.

Where do you see yourself in the future?

The plan at the moment is to use my degree to get into politics. Whatever form this looks like, I will have the goal of educational parity. I loved boarding school but the opportunities I had should be available for all students, regardless of income or distance. I want to use the education I have had to help others receive the same.


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