At Box Hill Institute’s 2018 Student and Staff Awards night, a new scholarship was introduced in honour of former employee and board member, Susan Fenton, who sadly passed away in October 2017.
Along with her family, the Box Hill Institute Group Board decided that an annual scholarship awarded to a female student enrolled in a traditional trade apprenticeship or the Building Studies (Architectural) course would be a fitting tribute to Susan’s contribution and dedication to the Box Hill Institute community.
Susan originally graduated as an engineer from the University of Melbourne, and after a successful engineering career, began working in the vocational sector inspiring students with her enthusiasm, and partnering with industry for the best student outcomes. She joined Box Hill Institute in 2011 as a teacher in the School of Foundation and Adult Learning and became a staff-elected Board member in July 2016.
Susan was well-known for her generous community spirit, dedicating 35 years of her life to volunteering with various community groups. Her dedication to the community was recognised when she received a Caroline Chisholm Award in 2014, which was presented by the Federal Member for Chisolm in recognition of significant volunteering services to the community.
For the inaugural Susan Fenton Inspiration Scholarship, five outstanding students were nominated by the Faculty of Trades teachers and interviewed by Susan’s husband Rob, and the Student Mobility & Scholarship Coordinator, Jeanette Toull. They were:
- Allannah Antonellos, Certificate III in Carpentry
- Amy Wheeler, Certificate III in Plumbing
- Bianca Mundie, Certificate III in Cabinet Making
- Chrissie Xiuping, Advanced Diploma of Building Studies
- Imogen Wilkinson, Certificate III in Light Vehicle Mechanical Technology
The scholarship was awarded to plumbing apprentice, Amy Wheeler, who the judging panel felt was a perfect representative of the scholarship and is in a position to inspire other females to pursue a trades career.
After finishing school, Amy wanted to pursue a ‘hands on’ career. She completed a pre-apprenticeship and soon secured an apprenticeship at New Plumbing Solutions where she won Apprentice of the Year (First Year), awarded by Apprenticeship Matters.
Now in her second year, Amy is already inspiring other young women to consider a trade career. She has spoken to secondary students at Aquinas College and presented at the Institute’s Pathways Forum on the topic of The Life of a Female Tradie.