25 September 2023

Emily an ABSTUDY success story

Start the conversation

The Department of Human Services (DHS) has turned the spotlight on one of its own staff members to point out the effectiveness of its national ABSTUDY Program.

Emily Strok, originally from Thursday Island but now working in Queensland, was assisted by ABSTUDY to complete her education and is now part of the ABSTUDY travel team helping others follow in her footsteps.

After graduating from high school, Ms Strok completed a qualification in Travel Retail Sales. She then moved to Cairns where she joined DHS through its Indigenous Apprenticeships Program.

She has been in her current role for six years, where she makes travel arrangements for current ABSTUDY boarding school and university students.

The Department said it was Ms Strok’s mother who made the choice to send her daughter to boarding school in Queensland to give her a higher quality education.

“She was able to do this thanks to the financial assistance of ABSTUDY – a means tested Government payment that helps Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians with a portion of the costs of studying, or an Australian Apprenticeship,” the Department said.

Ms Strok said her mother was a single parent working two jobs and raising five children.

“ABSTUDY helped to relieve financial stress, and contributed towards our tuition, boarding fees and travel expenses,” Ms Strok said.

“It was always my dream to work in travel in some way. The Indigenous Apprenticeships Program was a great way to get a foot in the door with Government employment.”

She said ABSTUDY allowed boarding students to return home during the school holidays.

“It means they can be with their family and maintain their culture, but also seize the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to get an amazing education that might not be available locally.”

Ms Strok’s story and other ABSTUDY success stories can be accessed on the DHS website at this PS News link.

Start the conversation

Be among the first to get all the Public Sector and Defence news and views that matter.

Subscribe now and receive the latest news, delivered free to your inbox.

By submitting your email address you are agreeing to Region Group's terms and conditions and privacy policy.