Ms Purnell said: “Thanks to the scholarship, I have never had to turn down any opportunity in Durham because of money, which would have been a major hurdle for me.
“I really enjoyed meeting people I wouldn’t have met otherwise, and I’ve done a lot of things I wouldn’t have done before.
“Anyone considering applying to Durham definitely should.
“One of the best choices I’ve made and as soon as I got here I knew I was in the right place.”
“And if you’re thinking of applying for a scholarship, definitely do it. Even if you think you can’t understand, just apply because you never know what will happen. It can truly be life-changing – and it was.”