Scholarship recognises Tara’s full potential

Born in Iran, Bachelor of Social Science (Social Welfare) student Tara Ahmadi was one of the recipients of the CSU Foundation Refugee Scholarship. “I am a mother of three children and the first person in my family who has attended university. This accomplishment means a lot to me, especially coming from a country where tertiary education is not seen as a bright future for women”.

Tara and her husband are non-religious and she found being non-religious in Iran – a theocratic regime where people are forced to be Muslims – very difficult. When religious persecution affected their children, they made the difficult decision to leave their country. In January 2012, the couple came to Australia on an old boat sailing from Indonesia to Christmas Island. It was a horrible journey, but they survived.

After six months living in a Darwin detention centre, they were finally released and transferred to Adelaide. In the time she has been living in Australia, Tara has studied continuously – from low level English classes to a Certificate IV in community services and later a Diploma, allowing her to enrol at CSU. “More than financial assistance, this scholarship has given me a sense of pride and self-esteem. Receiving the scholarship is not just receiving money for me, it tells me that I am seen as having the potential for the future of our society. It is an opportunity to realise and utilise my full potential.”