Transpower Rural Communities Trust Tertiary Grant

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What does the scholarship get me?

So far, almost 1,000 grants have been approved, totaling well over $600,000.

Closing dates for applications

Next: 30 September 2021

The closing dates for applications are: 31 March 30 September triannually.

Length of award

Please note: funding availability in each round is limited. Trustees prefer to allocate funding for specific item(s).

Number of awards offered


Purpose of award

The Rural Communities Trust recognizes that living in a rural community can mean facing barriers to education, health and other services. Funds come from member organizations.

Selection criteria

The Rural Communities Trust defines ‘rural’ as a town or district of less than 2000 people, or slightly larger, if there is no industry, or a rural district.

A student who:
is rural (see above definition)
has a proven academic ability
has shown a commitment to study
has set definite goals to achieve
may be studying for primary related qualification
manages to successfully balance study with sport or recreation
has special circumstances
is preferably a second or third year student

In order to qualify for a grant, a student must meet the criteria of being rural based on the Trust's definition above.  The student should have determined specifically what qualification they are seeking. Preference may apply for anyone studying for a qualification in, or related to, the primary industries.
It is desirable for the student to have a proven track record and an obvious ability to be successful in the determined study area.  In general, second or third year students will be preferred. First year students are often experimenting and frequently change direction.
The exception to this policy would be a first year student who has a proven academic record to achieve, but family financial circumstances are such that tertiary study is almost impossible. A person with a disability could also fall into this category.
Applications from students intending to study a course of one year’s duration may be considered.

What conditions are attached to acceptance of this award?

Funding Priorities

Individuals with specific health, educational, or social needs (Social includes sporting and cultural), living in rural areas, with an application which is well documented and supported, and which fall outside the criteria for Government agency assistance.

Rural community groups and organisations who have shown some self help, and require top-up assistance for specific projects.

Rural community groups and or individuals who may have received assistance from Government agencies, or other funding groups who require top-up assistance.

How do students apply?

The funding policy of the Rural Communities Trust is available from the secretary.
All applications should be addressed to:
            The Secretary
            Rural Communities Trust
            PO Box 715
            Wellington 6140
Application Form

How and when do students learn of the decision?

Trustees of the Rural Communities Trust meet three times annually to allocate grants. Please read the Funding Policies fully before applying.

History or background of award

The Rural Communities Trust was formed in 1982 to help people living in rural communities.

Additional information

THE TRUST: will not fund wages and salaries, will not fund the purchase of vehicles,will not provide set-up grants, will not provide on-going funding, will not provide another grant to the same individual, family or group within three years except in exceptional circumstances, will not fund other trusts or organisations for general purposes unless specific cases and items are detailed. As a general rule, the Trust will not fund overseas travel.

For guidelines, application forms and more information about this award contact

The Administrator
Rural Communities Trust
PO Box 447, Hamilton 3240
0800 327 646


Every effort has been made to ensure the above information is current and correct. However, applicants should contact the appropriate administering body before making an application, as details do change frequently. The administrator of this record last updated this information in January 2021.