Eight students from Shepparton's Wilmot Road Primary School were awarded 2020 Talent, Opportunity, Potential scholarships and one student was awarded an indigenous ambassadorship at their school assembly on Monday.
The scholarships are designed to form close relationships between the students, their families and local businesses.
Assistant principal and leader of the program Brendan Kenna said the process of selecting the right students was elaborate and difficult.
“Our criteria revolved around school values, attitude and application in class, extracurricular involvement and things like that,” Mr Kenna said.
The eight scholarship winners were in grades four and five, while the ambassadorship was awarded to year six student Bridget Cooper.
Each scholarship winner was awarded money to go towards extracurricular activities and school camps, while the ambassadorship winner gets the opportunity to go to TAFE or La Trobe University for work experience.
In total, there is $4500 worth of scholarship funds.
Additionally, the award recipients will each give presentations to their sponsors to show appreciation and how they can use the funding to achieve even more.
Despite Wilmot Road being one of the most disadvantaged schools in the state, Mr Kenna said he was proud of the school’s multiculturalism and diversity.
The local businesses contributing scholarships were Goulburn Broken Catchment Management Authority, Dawes and Vary Riordan Solicitors, McGuire College, The Apprenticeship Factory, DC & LC Hart Family, Liberal Member for Northern Victoria Wendy Lovell, Ngarrapna Indigenous Education Unit, and more recently, BM Civil Engineers and J Furphy and Sons.
There have been between eight and 10 sponsors for the Talent, Opportunity, Potential program since its inception in 2014, but Mr Kenna said the school was inviting more sponsors and would ideally like between 10 and 12 in future years.
“Some sponsors have been around for the duration of the program, but recently getting Furphy’s and BM Civil — these are big businesses,” he said.
“We’re always looking at getting new sponsors.”