Scholarships, grants and awards

Find out about different types of scholarships, grants and awards.

What types of scholarships, grants and awards are there?

Three students study outside on a blanket

Could you study for free? It's worth finding out

To get a scholarship, you need to meet certain criteria, which can be based on things like:

  • area of study
  • academic merit
  • community service or involvement
  • ethnicity
  • financial hardship
  • the industry or trade
  • leadership
  • the region you grew up in, or where you plan to study.

Scholarships can apply to different education levels, such as a diploma or Master's degree, and can also vary in what they cover. For example, some scholarships may cover tuition fees only, while others cover all course costs and some of your living expenses.

There are thousands of scholarships, grants and awards so take a good look at what you could apply for. There may be more opportunities than you think.

Scholarships from universities, polytechnics and wānanga

Many universities, polytechs and other education providers offer their own scholarships, grants and awards. There's often a scholarships officer or career adviser who can tell you what scholarships you may be eligible for (whether they're offered by the university or by someone else).

Tertiary education providers may also have a list of scholarships on their websites, including eligibility criteria and application forms. Check out the education providers listed below – the list isn't exhaustive, but it's a good place to start.

What does Fees Free mean for my scholarship?

Contact your scholarship provider directly to discuss your situation. You may be able to use the scholarship for living or course-related costs or use it in your second year of study instead.

What does Fees Free mean for my New Zealand Scholarship?

The New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA) awards New Zealand Scholarships to the top students who undertake the Scholarship assessment for an approved subject. You will still be granted the award money for any New Zealand Scholarship you get when you are enrolled in your first year of tertiary study in New Zealand.

NZQA website – eligibility requirements for New Zealand Scholarships 

Scholarships, grants and awards provided by government, industry or interest groups

Funding from government

Government agencies offer and administer a large number of scholarships, grants and awards. The New Zealand Government website is a good place to search, as it covers all government departments and agencies.

Funding from industry or interest groups

If you're interested in training in a specific industry area, you should check whether that industry has an industry training organisation (ITO). ITOs usually provide training and job information to hands-on industries such as agriculture.

Some also offer scholarships, or have information about where you can get scholarships related to that area of work.

Some of the links below relate to a specific types of jobs or areas of study and some are also for graduate students.

Find scholarships online

StudySpy scholarships

Use the StudySpy website to explore scholarship opportunities in New Zealand.

givME scholarships

Use the Generosity New Zealand givME platform to explore  scholarships and grants.

You can use givME for free at:

  • Citizens Advice Bureaux
  • public libraries
  • selected secondary schools, universities and polytechnics
  • selected community centres.

Where else can I go for help?

  • Talk to your careers adviser, they can tell you what scholarships, grants and awards you might be eligible for. They can also help you with application forms.
  • Talk to education providers, course co-ordinators and lecturers about options if you are already studying.
  • Check with sports, community, religious and other interest groups you’re involved in, or that are active in your area.

Updated 15 Mar 2019