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Scholarship winner has mastered the balancing act of life


2017 graduate, Luke Broekman has consecutively won the Talison Lithium St George’s College Accommodation Scholarship for three years from 2018 until 2020.

The Scholarship assists with accommodation fees at St George’s College and is awarded to an all-rounder for academic performance, sporting participation and the social aspects of boarding life.

More recently, Luke received the 2020 Australian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy (AusIMM) Award for Academic Achievement.

Each year, the Award is presented to a student with the highest academic performance and Luke received the prize for third year students studying Mining Engineering in 2020.

According to Luke, these accomplishments are testament to his balance between study and life.

“I have found a balance between playing sport, spending time with my friends and my studies, which is driven by my desire to complete my degree. One of my biggest accomplishments since leaving school, has been this ability to balance hobbies, uni life, education and family,” Luke said.

Luke is studying Mining Engineering at UWA and as part of his daily balancing act, he manages and designs clothes for the surfing brand, Shred Waterwear.

The surfing company was founded in 2018 with fellow Bunbury Cathedral Grammar School student, Bailey Taylor (17) and as part of their joint business, Luke designs casual surf clothing, manages social media platforms and creates videos to promote the clothing.

For his surfing designs and inspiration, Luke draws on his Yallingup roots and life-long connection to the ocean.

“I am definitely on the creative side and a lot of my work is inspired by nature and the waves,” he said.

Ingenuity, according to Luke has always been a personal strength and he hopes to combine his passion for surfing and creative flair with his engineering degree in an unusual area: the surfing industry.

“Engineering in the surfing related industry is indeed uncommon, with no universities worldwide offering such a course and I was very fortunate to be offered such a rare and unique opportunity to focus on surfing as my thesis subject,” he said.

The recent invention of the world’s first inflatable reef off Bunbury’s shores has caught Luke’s attention and he is hoping to assist with the project in 2021. Later this year, hee will be putting theory into practise as part of a graduate internship for BHP Billiton.

When he finishes his undergraduate studies, Luke aims to enrol in a Masters of Professional Engineering with a mining specialisation and continue his life balancing act.

“I want to further my engineering studies, to travel the world, to meet amazing people and to give back to my parents,” he said.

Like many millennials however, Luke is facing a dramatic hiatus to overseas travel and his plans to travel in 2022 might be postponed by the current travel restrictions, however, he still remains positive about the future.

“I am young and healthy and by travelling overseas I believe that I may gain a competitive edge through the confidence and cultural sensitivity that travelling helps you develop. Of course there current limitations to overseas travel, however, I believe by 2022 overseas travel will be a strong possibility,” he said.

On reflection, Luke believes that striking a balance between university studies and personal life is the key to success and that college life has fostered this balance.

“I would strongly recommend college life to prospective university students. I have made so many friendships here; through football, university, surfing, college and university events,” he said.

“It’s a fabulous place to grow and discover who you are and what you want to achieve in life,” he concluded.

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