Annual Reports

2014 Chairman's Report

When George Alexander established the Foundation, he said he liked the idea of ‘planting seeds and hoping they grow into pretty big trees.’ He was referring to supporting young people with potential, and this has become the underlying theme of the Foundation's philanthropy. For this year, the Foundation granted $1.2 million, taking it past a milestone total of $10 million in grants since 1972.
Headshot of elderly man in a suit smiling

This year we began a new partnership with The University of Melbourne in the form of the George Alexander Foundation Agricultural and Environmental Undergraduate Scholarship Program to be offered to agriculture students in the Faculty of Veterinary and Agricultural Sciences (FVAS).  Scholarship selection is merit-based, taking into account academic success as well as leadership accomplishments and potential, with a secondary consideration for rural and regional students. The scholarships will provide financial support to students to assist with their living, accommodation and relocation expenses. The program will offer five three-year scholarships annually from 2014-16, providing 15 scholarships in at a total cost of $337,500 over five years.

The Foundation has partnered with Swinburne University since 2006, offering a successful and sought-after scholarship program providing funding for living support to alleviate the financial pressures of living away from home while studying. The Foundation has renewed this program for a further three years with five three-year scholarships each year. This funding is for a total of $337,500 over five years.

A further nine undergraduate scholarship programs are ongoing at Australian Catholic University, Deakin University, Victoria University, The Gordon, University of Tasmania, RMIT University, Murdoch University, Griffith University, Swinburne University and University of South Australia. In addition, the Foundation supports a graduate scholarship program at Queensland University of Technology’s Australian Centre for Philanthropy and Non-Profit Studies.

The Foundation has also increased its support to the Earthwatch Institute Student Challenge Program, which enables students in Years 11 and 12 to participate as research assistants on conservation projects during the summer holidays. This program gives students an opportunity to gain practical experience in environmental conservation and research techniques. Students work with scientists and learn about opportunities for science as a career, sparking interest in university studies and future career options in science and the environment. The Foundation made a further three-year commitment but increased the grant from $50,000 to $80,000 per year to further the reach of the program.  

We congratulate the 74 new GAF Scholars and Fellows of 2014, as well as the Earthwatch Student Challenge participants. These recipients are a diverse, dedicated and deserving group, and we wish them well in their studies.

Charles Goode AC