Two years on from her own battle with cancer, a 19-year-old wants to help others in theirs.

Blenheim teenager Issy Cowlishaw will head to the University of Auckland when she finishes college with the ultimate aim of designing artificial limbs.

She was inspired by a young girl who she met while the pair were undergoing treatment at the Children's Haematology Oncology Centre (CHOC) at Christchurch Hospital. 

Her plan has seen her win a prestigious $10,000 AMP Study Start Scholarship to help her pursue her inspirational dream.

Cowlishaw, who had a bone marrow transplant in 2015 and is in remission, says she will use the money to achieve her dream of studying biomedical engineering and create prosthetics.

She and proud mum Debbie Cowlishaw attended a national awards ceremony in Auckland last week.

"I was absolutely blown away to win. I never expected it at all and was just so pleased to have made it to the finals. When I heard my name, I think I went in to shock," Issy says.

"I would love for the little girl who inspired me to know just how much she's helped. She was about 9-years old and I think she was from Nelson.

"She lost her leg through cancer and they were designing a prosthetic for her and that's what sparked my interest. She was my inspiration."

The Marlborough Girls' College student was diagnosed with an aggressive form of Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia (ALL) in 2015. She spent almost 200 nights in hospital in Christchurch.

She opted to repeat Year 12 to ensure she could pursue her study goal. She will spend four years studying for a Bachelor of Engineering (Hons) which specialises in the application of principles and techniques from the physical and engineering sciences to medical and biological problems.

"It's still sinking in that I won," Issy says. "I applied online and when I reached the semi finals I flew to Auckland to give a speech to three judges.

"It was really nerve-racking and I'd prepared cue cards but I was so passionate about it that when I started talking I didn't need them."

AMP managing director Blair Vernon says the talent, dedication and courage of the 2017 AMP Scholarship applicants meant it was extremely rewarding, as well as particularly challenging, to choose this year's talented recipients.

"We will continue to help foster greatness in our gifted dreamers and we look forward to helping talented Kiwis like Isabel go on to achieve great things," he says.

The Marlborough Express