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Great health science scholarships for postgrads

James Davis

Careers Commentator
The health sciences help preserve all aspects of public and individual health. Similarly, some of our favourite scholarships can help preserve your wallet.

To help offset some of the postgraduate study costs, we’ve come up with a list of excellent scholarships you can apply for in the health sciences, including but not limited to:

  • Audiology
  • Nutrition and dietetics
  • Occupational therapy
  • Paramedical studies
  • Pharmacy
  • Radiography
  • Speech pathology

This makes them quite flexible.

If you’re intimidated by the prospect of scholarship applications, fear not! We’ve written a free, comprehensive guide to postgraduate scholarships and getting selected that you can reference throughout this article. If you’d rather not go elsewhere for now, here are just a couple tidbits from it that’ll help you understand some of the common terminology in relation to scholarship applications:

  • There are three main types of scholarships.
    • Merit-based scholarships rely on some combination of grades, professional or extra-curricular achievements to succeed.
    • Need-based scholarships adopt their namesake in only being given to those of greatest need. This is commonly in the form of financial hardship, but can be in reference to coming from a disadvantaged background or having a disability.
    • Research-based scholarships are often discipline-specific endeavours that requires applicants to undergo research in a very particular area. For instance, it may require a student of archaeology to travel to Macedonia and investigate the remains of ancient Macedonian soldiers.
  • Written statements require a short blurb about yourself, with your achievements as supporting evidence rather than being centre stage.
  • CVs or resumes put your achievements first in fairly terse language.
  • Professional references are former bosses or professors.
  • Personal references are family members, friends or community leaders, the latter being preferable.
  • Academic transcripts are official or unofficial documents provided by your university. When an application asks for these if you haven’t yet finished undergrad, an unofficial transcript will normally do just fine.

Without further adieu, here are some great funding opportunities in the health sciences.

The House Call Futures in Health Indigenous Scholarship - $5,000

This scholarship is available not only to Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander students of health science, but all the medical, public health and nursing disciplines as well. It’s a merit-based scholarship, so try to assemble relevant extracurriculars and the highest grades you can achieve beforehand. To apply, you must:

  • Outline academic achievements to date
  • Describe involvement with community
  • Describe how the scholarship will impact your studies

These reopen annually, making them an excellent source of postgraduate funding you can try for each year.

Medshop Australia Student Scholarship Program - $1,500 or $3,500

This scholarship is available to students of all the previous disciplines, with an important distinction: it’s not a merit-based scholarship. All it requires are applicants to have a letter of acceptance or proof of current enrolment, in addition to a 1,000 word statement. This is longer than many others, encouraging students to detail why they’re passionate about their field. It’s also required to share the scholarship across Medshop’s social media accounts.

There are two of these scholarships available; the runner-up stands to earn $1,500 and the primary winner $3,500. The low barrier to entry makes it certainly worth considering either as a first scholarship or supplementary funding to another.

Master of Exercise Science (Strength and Conditioning) Industry Scholarship - 20% off tuition fees

This is exclusively for prospective postgraduate students of exercise science; you can’t yet be enrolled. It’s another curious scholarship in that applicants must attend select Edith Cowan University conferences to be eligible, making them fairly exclusive. Details about when these conferences take place aren’t publicly available, but you can learn more about them quite readily simply be contacting ECU. It’s a small amount of legwork for potentially quite significant reward.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Pharmacy Scholarship Scheme - $15,000 pa

Applicants of the eponymous descent and discipline are eligible for this scheme. They must be Australian citizens that are currently enrolled in any given program that results in the ability to practice as a pharmacist. They also need to either be a part of the University of New England’s Rural Health Club or student Rural Health Club.

This is a need-based scholarship so applicants don’t need to submit a transcript or CV, but even so the chances of success are greatly enhanced if they’re from a rural community.

CSIRO Postgraduate Scholarships - Health & Biosecurity - $10,000 pa

This is a great way for students on the government-issued Research Training Program (RTP) to gain some additional funding for their efforts. It provides students with a CSIRO supervisor for their research in addition to the one granted by their university, making it an invaluable resource in more than one sense.

This scholarship is often granted to domestic students, but provided international applicants are studying in a field where there’s a national shortage, they too can be eligible. In our article on getting a visa to study in Australia, we compiled an exhaustive list of valid occupations and necessary qualifications that you can consult for further insight into whether or not your field is eligible. The following are just some relevant health occupations that the nation requires, complete with courses you can undergo to acquire the necessary qualifications:

This is a merit-based scholarship with all the associated standard requirements in addition to being within the first 12 months of your research program (master’s degree or PhD).

The PostgradAustralia Scholarship - $2,750

Of course, we’re huge advocates of our own scholarship. What may surprise you is that it’s not only because we created it! No, the real advantage it has over others is its low barrier to entry. There are no GPA requirements, specific lines of research or criteria of need. International students are just as welcome as domestic. We simply require students to show off passion for their line of study within:

  • A 500 word written statement, and
  • A creative social media post directed at us.

This makes it a great supplement to any existing scholarships, or a fantastic shot at a first one. First and foremost, our selection committee are looking for passion and drive. If you’ve got this, you may have our funding too.

Hopefully this article has given you a better understanding about what health scholarships are available! As you can see, there are some fairly specific requirements among these. We covered one of the many CSIRO scholarships in this article, but for those it’s wise to go for the Research Training Program beforehand. If you’re doubtful that you meet the requirements of any of these, we’ve got a full directory of general scholarships that we’re sure you’ll like the look of here. While you flip through these, have our guide to postgraduate scholarships at hand to give you the best shot at success. Good luck!