Fourth year Bachelor of Justice/ Bachelor of Laws (Honours) student Sarah Gough is the recipient of the 2020 Ashurst Rod Bush Memorial Scholarship.
For more than two decades the scholarship has acknowledged and paid tribute to Rod Bush, the first Managing Partner of Ashurst’s Brisbane office. Rod Bush was significant in the firm's development and the development of young lawyers in Brisbane. He looked for students with 'that extra spark of enthusiasm' and was impressed by those who worked hard to put themselves through university while managing to excel academically. Rod passed away in 1998 and is sadly missed by all who worked with him.
In her scholarship application, Sarah shared her story of extreme adversity that she has overcome with unbelievable resilience, drive and determination. She has been independent since age 17 and her scholarship application was a clear leader among those received. Her tenacity is reflected in both her personal and academic endeavours. Sarah has a history of volunteering to help others in arenas ranging from the Queensland Family and Child Commission through to the LLB Help Me program at QUT and the university’s Student Leader program.
Earlier this year, she received acknowledgement at the 2020 QUT Faculty of Law Prize Ceremony after achieving the top performance for JSB261 Theories of Government for the 2019 academic year.
She is interested in constitutional law, administrative law, migration law and contract law. With an interest in an individual’s relations with the State, Sarah wants to advocate for children, young people and adults in positions of societal disadvantage in her future law practice.
Both Ashurst’s Brisbane Partner, Damian Salsbury and Executive Dean, Professor Dan Hunter acknowledged Sarah’s achievements and her resilience.
Damian Salsbury said, "We are honoured to be awarding Sarah Gough the 2020 Rod Bush scholarship. Rod was always impressed by those who put themselves through university and Sarah has not only supported herself through university but has succeeded academically while facing personal and financial hardships. It is through Sarah's ability to overcome challenges, maintain a strong focus on her studies and going above and beyond that demonstrates her determination, resilience and passion about the law. Sarah's hard work ethic and drive have led her to achieve a strong academic record and achievements throughout her university career. "
Sarah said, “Having the Rod Bush Memorial Scholarship helps to shoulder the financial load of study, which is a tremendous, freeing feeling. Beyond that, the safety net of a scholarship in the midst of a pandemic and economic recession, has left me feeling secure in my educational pursuits, with sights set firmly on clerkships, graduation and future employment opportunities.”
She added that the most significant intangible benefit of the scholarship has been recognition. “I am someone who dedicates themselves to hard work out of sheer love for a task, and not to be noticed. However, to be recognised for passion, enthusiasm, and resilience, has had an immeasurable positive effect on me. I feel empowered from receiving this scholarship and with it, the recognition of my hard work.”
Staff from QUT and Ashurst congratulate Sarah and look forward to following her future endeavours.