Scholarship Foundation helps financially disadvantaged girls and boys to undertake full-time study toward degree courses at any Victorian University. Currently scholarships are valued at $10,000 per annum for a three-year course.

Maria Ilinova, the 2008 recipient said: ‘I came to Australia with my mother and brother from Russia when I was 11 years old, speaking no English at all. I obtained 98.05 for my VCE and a place in physiotherapy at the University of Melbourne.

‘Without this scholarship, I could not afford to go to university. I am so grateful to the Foundation, which has given me an opportunity to fulfil my passion.’

ANZ Trustees managing director Stephanie Chenoweth said: ‘Thanks to the support of a few generous donors – together with ANZ and ANZ Trustees – the scholarship is now in its fourth year. To date, 14 bright young minds have gained a better future through higher education.’

To maximise the scholars’ chances of success The Foundation provides personal support through mentors who help and advise students.

The Foundation’s objective is to raise $1 million in capital by 2010 to reach a greater number of young, disadvantaged Australians striving to achieve their educational goals.

Members of the public are encouraged to assist by making a tax-deductible donation to the Mary Jane Lewis Scholarship Foundation, to leaving a bequest intheir will by or expressing an interest in mentoring a Mary Jane Lewis Scholar.