Crombie Scholarship eases university costs for Napier students

Feelings of disbelief and amazement came over Napier teens, Jacob Driver and Roisin Kenny recently, when they were told they were the recipients of the highly contested Diana and Colin Crombie Scholarship, managed by Hawke’s Bay Foundation.

The Year 13 students were awarded $9,000 each – given out over the course of three years – to help towards tertiary education.

Roisin, a student at Napier Girls High School, says finding out she was shortlisted for the scholarship alongside 47 other “amazingly talented and high-achieving students” and then being awarded it, was a huge surprise.

“I was in shock before being really excited and proud that my own achievements had been enough to be chosen,” Roisin says.

Roisin plans to study a Bachelor of Arts, double majoring in TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) and International Relations and minoring in New Zealand Sign Language, at Victoria University of Wellington next year.

“I want to help people to be able to communicate, whether that be overseas or in New Zealand.

“I love studying languages, and outside of my school studies of Japanese, I have been working on learning NZSL and Korean, along with Celtic Gaelic from my father.”

Roisin, an accomplished writer and musician, currently works three part-time to support her upcoming tertiary studies and accommodation.

“I’ll be using the scholarship money to help pay for my accommodation and tuition fees while I’m at Victoria.”

Meanwhile across town, Napier Boys’ High School student, Jacob, had similar feelings of surprise when he heard he had been awarded the prestigious scholarship.

“When I was first told I was successful I was in disbelief,” Jacob says.

“When I was told that I had been chosen as a recipient, I was incredibly happy and overwhelmed with excitement, not just for me but my family also.”

Having developed a keen interest around how the body moves and operates during physical activity, Jacob intends to study a Bachelor of Science, majoring in Exercise and Sport Science and minoring in psychology at Otago University.

“I have always been a keen sportsman from a very young age and my dream has always been to work in a sports related industry where I have the opportunity to help people,” Jacob says.

“This year I was lucky enough to sit in on a resilience workshop where I discovered a newly found interest in psychology and how the mind operates during different situations. At Otago I found that I was able to combine the two to create an exciting degree pathway that I hope will lead me into my dream career.

“I currently work part time at New World Greenmeadows where around half of my wages each week go into a university savings account. I also intend on moving into full time work once the school holidays begin so I can save more money.

“The scholarship will be extremely helpful in helping me pay for my upcoming university costs in 2021.”

Formerly the Penzance Charitable Trust, the Diana and Colin Crombie Scholarship Fund has provided scholarships to students from Napier Boys’ High School and Napier Girls’ High School who are going on to any kind of tertiary education for the past 15 years.

Founders of the Fund, Colin and Diana Crombie, say the scholarships are particularly aimed at “sons and daughters of hard-working families”.

Hawke’s Bay Foundation Client Relations Coordinator, Alison Harper, says the high calibre of applications made the selection process very difficult.

“Many of the applicants were largely involved in their community and were high achieving individuals, involved in a variety of sports and cultural endeavours,” Alison says.

“They all seemed positive about the year ahead – despite Covid 19 and the disruption they had faced during their final year of schooling. It gave me great hope for our future leaders.”