In July this year, Deakin University mechanical engineering student Jordan Ritchie was announced as the first Australian recipient of the Ford Motor Company’s Alan Mulally Leadership in Engineering Scholarship.
The scholarship is named after Alan Mulally who guided Ford through the global financial crisis of late last decade. To honour his outstanding service to Ford, the company established a new global scholarship program in 2014 – The Alan Mulally Leadership in Engineering Scholarship. The program supports the awarding of 10 US$10,000 scholarships annually to outstanding second or third-year engineering students at 10 premier partner universities around the globe – one scholarship winner per school.
Only five scholarships are awarded outside of the USA each year and, for the first time in the program’s history, Australia was chosen as a recipient region. In announcing Mr Ritchie’s scholarship, Ford Australia said it and ‘key partner’ Deakin chose one ‘stand-out student to gain a wealth of experience and knowledge in the automotive and mobility sector’.
‘I’ve always been set on engineering as a career choice and I was extremely appreciative that a company as large as Ford would take notice of me,’ Mr Ritchie said.
‘I’m fascinated by the research and development Ford engineers do here in Australia and around the world – it’s very exciting stuff, so I’m keen to learn more and experience it firsthand.
‘For me, the biggest future trend I’d be interested to pursue is electric vehicles, although I’m currently participating in Deakin’s Eco-marathon team project, which is based around developing a specialised vehicle that can achieve the highest possible fuel efficiency.’
Professor Karen Hapgood, Head of Deakin’s School of Engineering, said the scholarship would make a difference.
‘We know that a significant gift like this one will make a real difference for Jordan, allowing him to focus on his studies and excel,’ Professor Hapgood said.
‘At Deakin, we are committed to educating the next generation of engineers to be innovative, creative, skilled problem solvers, with the practical experience to ensure they are job ready. Jordan is a great example of the capability of our students and this prestigious scholarship from Ford demonstrates the impact of a Deakin engineering degree.’
Scholarship recipients are connected with the Ford Blue Oval Scholars initiative, which allows the company to maintain an ongoing relationship with its scholarship winners worldwide.
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