Local girl crowned with dental scholarship

Former Emerald State High School student Holly McLean has been awarded a $30,000 QCoal Foundation scholarship for her Bachelor of Dental Surgery at James Cook University. PHOTO: Supplied

AN EMERALD local is the latest to have been awarded the $30,000 QCoal Foundation scholarship from the QCoal Foundation.
Award recipient Holly McLean, a graduate of Emerald State High School, started her Bachelor of Dental Surgery at James Cook University in Cairns earlier this year.
“Growing up in a regional and rural area, I witnessed how hard it can be for people to get the health care they need and studying dentistry at JCU is a great opportunity that will allow me to take my skills back to rural communities like Emerald,” she said.
“I’ve been inspired by the people who provide health and medical care in regional areas, and organisations like the Royal Flying Doctor Service that aim to improve these communities.
“During my first few weeks as a dentistry student I’ve been very nervous, but also excited for the new beginning.”
QCoal Foundation Chairman Christopher Wallin said Holly was admirably committed to her chosen profession.
“The directors and I, along with members of the JCU and Foundation staff on our Scholarship Selection Committee, were particularly impressed with Holly’s commitment to dentistry through her volunteering at a local dental practice and, importantly, her ability to reflect her understanding of the challenges in accessing oral health services in regional and remote Queensland areas,” he said.
“We are delighted that Holly has shown such a strong interest in pursuing dentistry and to contributing to those communities in the future.”
Holly said she was grateful to receive the scholarship.
“I’m very grateful for the support – it will be a big help dealing with the stress and costs that come with living this far from home, and now I can be more focused on my studies.”