My name is Janaya Watego and I am a proud Munanjali, Kooma and South Sea woman born in Brisbane, raised in both Brisbane and Townsville. I am currently in my first year, studying at QUT as a Paramedic/Nursing student. University was always a dream of mine that I never thought I could achieve. After losing various family members and my own father during high school, I grieved hard, and lost myself which in turn caused me to drop out of school in year 11.
However, after 2 months I found myself wanting to enter back into the schooling environment and I did so, but in a new city and with the hope of a fresh start. This is where I became a QATSIF recipient and 2017 Community captain at Sunnybank State High School. High school wasn’t the easiest journey for an independent 16-year-old moving away from her mum, but with the QATSIF scholarship in place I was able to finish year 12 and graduate with a QCE.
After school, I found myself lost again as I had no passion. With no OP, in my eyes the dream of university was so far out of the picture for someone like me. However, in January 2018, I decided to give it another look and I found myself drawn to a Paramedic/Nursing degree at QUT. With the help of the Oodgeroo unit I was able to secure a place at university. I decided that no matter what, no matter how hard, I will always chase my dreams.
My advice to anyone struggling or going through hardship is to keep striving and never let your struggles define you or your story. Everyone is strong, and everyone has the ability to achieve. It’s about passion and how hard you're willing to work for the end goal.
I am extremely excited for the next chapter in my life and to see where my journey will take me. I also can’t wait to finish my degree, where I hope to use my skills and work to give give back to my community and assist them with their health.