Community service is a big part of Ella Babarovich’s life already earning her the 2021 Margate Community Bank Youth Educations Scholarship as she begins university life.
The 18-year-old former Southern Cross Catholic College student has received $2500 to help cover study costs. Moreton Daily is shining a light on her achievements as we celebrate Queensland Youth Week this week.
“It’s a major help. Some of that money will go towards textbooks and resources and the majority will be used to start paying my fees,” Ella says.
She has a natural desire to help people and hopes her chosen career path will enable her to do that either with young people as a teacher, or sportspeople as a sports scientist.
The Margate resident is already doing that by tutoring Year 11 students in biology, physical education and religion.
“It’s just something I enjoy and I know ultimately it’s going to help the community as a whole,” she says.
Ella has been a regular volunteer at the Breakfast Club of Redcliffe for the past three years, serving meals to the needy twice on Christmas Day.
It started at school in Year 11 as part of the LaSalle Youth Leaders program and continued post-graduation, when she and her friend Charlotte decided to become “proper volunteers”.
“We volunteer once a week. It’s not much time out of your schedule to put back in for the reward you get by feeling like you’re achieving something,” Ella says.
“I like that I’m doing something that’s putting something back into the community. I enjoy going and making a difference.”
Ella has also learnt much from the adult volunteers at the breakfast club.
“You can see how much they enjoy having the school students there and the young people,” she says.
Margate Community Bank Scholarship and Student Development Committee Chairman Daniel Petravicius says Ella’s academic achievement, service to the community and personal qualities which made her a good ambassador for the bank earned her the scholarship.
He says while her ATAR score was impressive, it was her service in her school and community that truly made her stand out.
“We look for students who have that potential and drive to make a difference in the community,” Daniel says.
“She really exhibits the community service that we hope to see in young people wanting to serve and assist.”
Daniel, who won the same scholarship in 2014, says he knows firsthand what a difference it makes when transitioning to university life.
He is looking forward to seeing what Ella achieves in studying her double-degree in Exercise Science and Secondary Education and beyond.
“When we interviewed her, her passion for science shone through. She really has a burning passion for not just getting into education so she can teach other students about science and physical education, but also potentially working with athletes to better understand their bodies and what they can achieve,” he says.
Find more Youth Week heroes here