The Michael Harvey Colyer Memorial Scholarship

M H Colyer LP cropped

This scholarship commemorates the service to his country by Captain Michael Harvey Colyer who died on November 4, 1942 at El Alamein Egypt during the Second World War. Michael Colyer enlisted with the 2nd AIF on 25 February 1941 at Killara, NSW and at the time of his death was serving as the Resident Medical Officer with the 2/43 Australian Infantry Battalion.
A graphic insight into Captain Colyer’s wartime experience can be found in an account of The Blockhouse at El Alamein. Reference is made to Captain Colyer’s ‘sympathetic manner’, serving as a Regimental Medical Officer in a building described as ‘a kind of international medical post….it was not a fortification, but a hospital, and to men on both sides it became an oasis of humanity in the midst of carnage….” (Wartime Magazine 1999, 8 Author: Dr Mark Johnston, Head of Histrory at Scotch College, Melbourne).
Michael Colyer was the son of Moreton John Godden Colyer and his wife Aimee Helen Colyer (nee Gordon).

The Scholarship & Miss Mary Gordon
The MH Colyer Memorial Scholarship was first granted in 1943, after Aimee’s sister, Miss Mary Gordon’s act of philanthropy established a fund to promote and encourage education. The scholarship, was inspired by the memory of her nephew Michael Colyer who attended schools in Tumut and Sydney before completing a medical degree at Sydney University.A bursary was to be awarded to a student of Tumut High School for an intermediate scholar to continue studies with a view to entering University. The scholarship of 50 pounds was first granted in 1943, and was very generous. (Average male earnings in 1943 were close to 6 pounds per week).

Community Foundation asked to help
In 2005 the Community Foundation demonstrated a commitment to administer the scholarship and seeks to grow the fund to make scholarships available to help meet one of the the Foundation’s aims, ‘to make a difference where we live’.
Integral to the Captain Colyer Memorial Scholarship for Continuing Studies is recognition of the request of Miss Gordon and the original trustees of the fund to encourage local students to develop their skills and personal ambitions by continuing their education after leaving school.

Students in Year 10, Year 11 or Year 12 at Tumut High School and seeking entry in the following year to a course at a university or other tertiary institution, are encouraged to apply for the scholarship. Since 2005, scholarships have been awarded to students completing Year 12 with a goal to undertake university studies.
Valued at $1000, the scholarship assists the recipient, in the first year of their studies, with purchases of course related books, course fees, course expenses and /or a contribution towards on-campus accommodation fees.

The scholarship was initially established for the sons of ex-servicemen, however, the award is now available to male and female students of Tumut High School who are the descendants of ex-servicemen / ex-servicewomen or current army,navy or air force personnel or a past /current member of a peace keeping force. Overseas service is not essential.

The scholarship was not awarded during 1995 to 2004. The administration of the scholarship was then entrusted to the Community Foundation. Nine scholarships have been awarded since 2005, with the Community Foundation proud to support a scholarship encouraging local students to develop their skills and personal ambitions by continuing education.The Foundation would like to see this scholarship continue.

A list follows of recipients benefiting from the M. H. Colyer Scholarship. The scholarship was not awarded in some years and while significant records have been maintained, there appear to be gaps in explanatory documentation. The period 1995 to 2004 saw trustee numbers decline, with no scholarships given during this period. It is also understood that a scholarship listing with a heritage of over 70 years will include a number of recipients now deceased. The Foundation would greatly appreciate assistance with information about the recipients as well as any of the ‘missing’ years.

1943 – 1945 Neville Hinchcliffe
1946 unknown
1947 Morris Tod
1948 – 1950 Peter Kemp
1951 unknown
1952 Ian Hayes
1953 Donald Elder
1954 Phillip Wren
1955 – 1956 Graeme Evans
1957 Laurence Piper
1958 – 1959 Laurence James Bridge
1960 Ross Eggleton
1961 – 1962 unknown
1963 William Stanley Sundin
1964 David Roger Galvin
1965 – 1966 Raymond John Vickery
1966 – 1967 Robert Beegling
1968 Michael Joseph Nowlan
1969 not awarded
1970 – 1971 Gary Smith
1972 – 1973 Michael Lindley
1972 – 1973 David Lindley
1974 – 1975 Andrew Tod
1976 Ken Agnew
1977 – 1984 unknown
1985 Richard Davis
1986 Kylie Ann Ellison
1987 unknown
1988 Matthew James Carr
1989 Melissa Pearce
1990 Benjamin David Walters
1991 Stephen Foley
1992 Nicole Maree Carr
1993 not awarded
1994 Aimee Charoline Johnson
1995 – 2004 not awarded
2005 Cameron Ellison
2006 not awarded
2007 Bonnie Martin
2008 Rhys McDonald
2009 Stacey McGrath
2010 Heather Wortes
2011 Melanie Roberts
2012 Sarah Hockey
2013 Darcy Hughes
2014 Megan McGrath