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Indigenous medical student takes home scholarship win
Proud Jirrbal woman Talisha is so passionate about the health and wellbeing of her community she’s not settling for just a qualification in nursing, she is currently studying her second degree in medicine. Talisha is also one of our Young, Black and Proud academic scholarship winners for 2023 and we can’t wait to welcome her into the field of community-controlled health when she graduates.
“It was during my placements in Townsville that I really saw the health disparities between my people and the rest of Australia,” Talisha said.
“I wanted to practice with a wider scope and have a louder voice so I applied to study medicine.”
Beyond the standard workload for a second-year medical student Talisha also spends her free time tutoring undergraduate Indigenous nursing students and speaking at national conferences.
“In 2021 I spoke on a student panel at the Congress of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Nurses and Midwives (CATSINaM) conference. Additionally I was fortunate to attend the Australian Indigenous Doctor’s Association conference in 2022.”
“It was a powerful feeling being in a room surrounded by Indigenous doctors and I can’t wait for the day to attend as a qualified doctor myself,” said Talisha.
Talisha has also been accepted into the AIME program and will be attending Indooroopilly High School weekly to yarn with Indigenous students about their aspirations and navigating the path to university and a career in primary health.
Talisha plans to move to Toowoomba for her third year of medical school and intends to use the scholarship funds to purchase a car to facilitate her relocation and daily life in Toowoomba. Despite the financial challenges and the emotional toll of being away from her family in Townsville, Talisha remains focused on her studies and her mission to improve Indigenous healthcare.