Although Gen Z is swinging the pendulum in the right direction, as the most politically inclusive and tolerant generation, many young Australians continue to suffer from identity-based discrimination. The LGBTQIA+ community is one such category.
According to the National LGBTI Health Alliance, LGBTQIA+ identifying individuals are 5 and 11 times more likely to attempt self-harm or experience psychological distress because of prejudice, bullying or abuse. While policies on LGBTQIA+ issues have improved by leaps and bounds, it is fair to say we still have a way to go.
Cue the Pinnacle Foundation. Since its establishment in 2007, Pinnacle has helped LGBTQIA+ Australian’s “reclaim their path.” By supporting young Australians through the associated challenges stemming from their gender or sexual identity, Pinnacle provides an environment where LGBTQIA+ youth feel a sense of belonging and community.
The Pinnacle Foundation is committed to helping queer Australians achieve their academic aspirations. As founding chair Paul Zahra explains, “We (at the Pinnacle foundation) have educated and supported countless young LGBTQIA+ Australians to become role models and leaders in their fields.” To do this, the foundation provides various educational scholarships and career development opportunities to LGBTQIA+ identifying Australians.
So, what is the Pinnacle Foundation Scholarship?
Helping queer Australians overcome challenges associated with their gender identity, sexual orientation or sexual characteristics, the Pinnacle Foundation offers multi-year scholarships to full-time students attending public higher education institutions. Applicants must be between 18 and 27 years old, an Australian citizen and have achieved good academic results.
Granted to LGBTQIA+ students in any profession or trade, the Pinnacle Foundation offers financial aid and mentorship programs to young Australians. Scholarship recipients are matched with mentors who share their gender identity, sexual orientation alongside professional and academic interests.
Through this, the Pinnacle Foundation is helping Australia move toward a more inclusive society, one with LGBTQIA+ role models, greater opportunity for marginalised groups and academic equality.
How do you apply?
Applications for the Pinnacle Foundation’s 2022 scholarships are now open and will close on September 15, 2021. For more details and to apply, visit the Pinnacle Foundation’s website.