University of NSW (UNSW) law student and intern Corey Blyth was awarded the 2024 John Koowarta Reconciliation Law Scholarship at Friday night’s Law Council of Australia Gala Dinner.
The John Koowarta Scholarship is a national scholarship dedicated to helping Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander law students achieve their ambition of becoming a lawyer. It honours John Koowarta, a Winychanam Elder, who pioneered Aboriginal land rights.
Law Council of Australia President Luke Murphy said: “Corey is a fourth-year law student who has already achieved a great deal: academically, professionally and personally. During his studies, Corey has attained outstanding grades and has worked as a legal intern, most recently at the NSW Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions.
“Even with this workload, Corey has given generously to others. This has included research assistant work on social policy projects, tutoring fellow and prospective Indigenous law students at UNSW and volunteering within his local community.”
Corey said: “I am absolutely delighted to have been awarded this scholarship because it stands for so much more than me. It represents the incredible legacy of John Koowarta and demonstrates the growing support for Indigenous law students at university and in the workplace.
“John Koowarta could not possibly have anticipated that he, a Winychanam man from Cape York, would be the plaintiff in a case which would ascend to the High Court of Australia and would provide the legal foundation for later landmark native title cases.
“By bearing Koowarta’s name, this scholarship reminds us that ambition, a strong sense of justice, future-focused thinking and a hint of naivety are good traits to have in the face of adversity.”