My name is Kinjia May Gamitjan Maliwanga Munkara-Murray, and I am a proud member of the Rembrarrnga and Tiwi clans.
In February of 2015, I left Darwin to begin my studies at the University of Melbourne. Only 6 months prior had I first learned about the opportunities available outside of my tropical home, on the other side of the continent.
Now I am in my third year of the Bachelor of Arts Extended, and currently studying psychology. I am an Ambassador for the Murrup Barak institute, and talk to indigenous students that are often in the same position as I was when I was in high school. They are often unaware of the opportunities that are available, and don't always believe that they are good enough to pursue these opportunities. The most impactful moment early in my studies was the introduction to the great number of Indigenous academics at Melbourne, it filled me with such admiration and gave me something to strive towards.
I got to where I am today because of the people who believed in me. It was the people along the way who invested their time, resources and faith in me, that showed me that I deserve to be here.
In one of my first lectures at the University of Melbourne, my professor said to me: there is no such thing as a self-made man or woman. From the moment you are born, society clothes you, feeds you and educates you. I thought about this statement for a while, sitting in that lecture hall seat that I otherwise wouldn't have been able to if it weren't for the people that had fought for me to be there.
As a recipient of the Renate Kamener scholarship, I am reminded that there are people who believe in me, and I am deeply grateful for that and feel that it is only appropriate that one day I should do the same for others.