The Winchester Foundation

The John & Beryl Neilsen Winchester Foundation was established as a Public Foundation in 2011 by Mrs Beryl Neilsen.

The main motivation behind its creation is to provide assistance to children and youth living in rural and regional areas with their education. The desire of Mrs Neilsen is to see rural and regional families given the same opportunities as those living in cities re. various levels of education.

Assistance is provided by way of a scholarship to assist with the study costs of the successful recipient. These scholarships are not limited to those studying a tertiary degree, but are also available to assist those studying trades, secondary and primary education.

Being a Registered Public Foundation, tax deductible donations can be received by the foundation who in turn will allocate these funds to those in most need of assistance to continue with their careers.

It is the hope of Mrs Neilsen that recipients of the Foundation’s scholarships are not only successful in their own academic endeavours, but will continue to have a lifelong association with the Foundation. This will also realise a lasting memento to her late husband and herself, and also to their property known as “Winchester”.

Recipient Testimonials

Hi, my name is Alistair Houghton and I was one of the recipients of the John and Beryl Nielson Winchester Foundation scholarship in its inaugural year. I have just completed the second year of a Physiotherapy degree at James Cook University in Townsville. For this time I have lived on Saints residential college.

The Winchester Foundation scholarship has been extremely helpful in allowing me to focus on study and not worry about the finances involved in living away from home. This allows me to stay at the college which has helped me greatly in terms of my social life, establishing a network with other students in my course and being in an environment where everyone has a common goal. It was also very rewarding being able to take part in the 2013 Whitsunday Voices literature festival by working with a large group of primary school students from rural areas around Mackay who were sponsored by the Winchester Foundation so that they could attend the festival, an opportunity they regularly would not have had. Having the assistance of the scholarship means I do not have to work while at university and relieves my parents of a lot of pressure, particularly as I have a younger brother and sister who also plan to go on to higher education in the next few years.

I am greatly appreciative of the support offered by the Winchester Foundation and look forward to take part in foundation events and meeting new recipients over the coming years.

My name is Ashleigh Sercombe I am currently studying a bachelor of medicine and surgery at James Cook University in Townsville and I am in my second year. Once I graduate I may specialise in a particular field, however at this point in time I have not decided on which field as there are so many interesting options available.

I am very honoured and grateful to be both a recipient and a member of the Winchester foundation. The scholarship has made my university experience much more enjoyable as it has allowed me to focus on my studies without having the added pressure of working part time during the semester to financially support myself.

I am sincerely grateful for the financial assistance the Foundation has provided.

My name is Jack Sambell and I am currently in my second year of Electrical Engineering at the University of Queensland in Brisbane.

My first two years of university have revolved around a fairly general course of study, with each subject covering very broad topics. For this reason, I am still uncertain as to which particular field of Electrical Engineering I will pursue, although an involvement in the development of sustainable clean energy seems to hold some exciting prospects.

The course is a very demanding one, requiring my full commitment to be successful, and so the scholarship has enabled me to concentrate on my studies.

I feel honoured to be a part of the John and Beryl Winchester foundation, and am indebted to them for their support and generosity.

I am studying Veterinary Science at James Cook University Townsville and have almost completed my third year in the five year degree.

I am really enjoying the learning experience thus far and look forward to the learning yet to come. My interests have always been cattle and horses and this is where I would like to establish myself upon completion of the course, in the rural regional centres hopefully focussing on these animals. The Winchester Foundation has provided me with a great opportunity to move away from home and continue to achieve my goals, which without the foundations support, may have been a lot more difficult for me to achieve.

I owe a great deal to the foundation for the support they have provided me.

My name is Lisa Sercombe and I am originally from Mackay.

Currently, I am in my third and final year of a bachelor of science (Advanced) majoring in physiology and pharmacology at James Cook University Townsville. Following my graduation I plan to pursue an honours; a year-long research project in reproductive physiology namely, the fertilisation capacity of heat stressed boar spermatozoa and its subsequent impact on embryo developmental biology. Following honours, my goal is to undertake a PhD in embryology, IVF and/or twinning. After the completion of my PhD I plan to embark on a post doctorate, another research project which will enable me to hone my science and to contribute to the scientific community. My long term career aspiration is to participate in various fields of reproductive physiology and embryology research and to facilitate the lecturing of these subjects at the university level.

As a recipient of John and Beryl Winchester Foundation scholarship, I have been able to complete my studies without the added stress of working part time, which means I can focus more on my studies.

I am truly grateful for this unique opportunity the Foundation has provided.