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Get paid to travel while you study

James Davis

Careers Commentator
There are many avenues of funding available to students who want to see the world while finishing their degree. Here are six of the best.

It’s easy to assume that travel scholarships are reserved only for students with a GPA of 37,000 and 89 years of work experience, but we assure you that isn’t the case. Here are some great options that are accessible to students from all manner of backgrounds. If you find any to be closed, keep an eye on it. These scholarships tend to come back annually.

There are several kinds of scholarship, each issued for different reasons. A bursary, for instance, is designed for students who can’t normally fund their own study. This makes them ideal for those experiencing socio-economic hardship or suffer from financially demanding medical conditions. In return, the recipient is usually expected to study at the host institution or undergo coursework at their behest.

A grant is payment that can be made by a variety of parties, such as a trust fund, government, business, non-profit or generous individual for the purposes of research. In a postgraduate context, aspirants must submit a grant application. This process is so sought after that ‘grant writer’ is its own dedicated profession. Applicants must detail exactly how they are to spend the money, often preparing accurate budgets and itineraries. This makes them difficult to apply for, but well worth the effort.

Individual scholarships target specific disciplines, often accompanied by merit requirements in the form of GPA and a respectable CV. The specificity of these opportunities allows them to be very well-suited, especially regarding travel. A student of postgraduate Mandarin, for instance, would benefit greatly from language lessons in Beijing rather than miscellaneous activities in another part of the world.

Finally, general merit-based scholarships can be found across disciplines. These allow high-achieving students to travel all over the world, but their GPA prerequisites have no upper limit; whichever applicant’s GPA is highest will win. These scholarships are the least likely to be influenced by extracurricular achievements and extraneous factors, but they’re still a consideration in many cases.

Without further adieu, here are some of the best postgraduate travel scholarships available.

Global Study Awards hosted by the ISIC Association, StudyPortals and British Council IELTS

These $10,000 scholarships are offered to students from any faculty. The goal is to provide globally conscientious students the chance to study at any tertiary institution outside their home country. This makes it an unusually flexible option, as most study grants have a specific location in mind. Applicants can apply here so long as they meet some basic prerequisites, such as:

  • Be 18 years of age or older
  • Be planning to enroll in a higher degree program
  • Have a sincere desire to increase multicultural understanding worldwide

The Ian Robertson Travel Prize

This $600 grant is awarded to students of history undergoing research. It is designed to complement a Graduate Research in Arts Travel Scheme (GRATS), with applicants being required to attach a copy of their GRATS application alongside their application for this prize. This combination of opportunities are excellent not only for history, but the general category of arts too.

RMIT Equity Travel Grant

This $4,000 grant allows disadvantaged students to study across continents, including Africa, Europe, Korea, the Indian subcontinent and more. What constitutes ‘disadvantaged’ is fairly broad, with many different requirements for proving it. Some of these include:

  • Having a Centrelink Health Care Card
  • Having a long term debilitating medical condition, with records to prove it
  • Being from a developing country
  • Experiencing family difficulties

Department of Education and Training: Asia Postgraduate Program

Students at Flinders University can apply for these government grants to fund their postgraduate research all across Asia. At the time of writing, there are two projects available.

  • “Occupational Therapy Clinical Placements in Manipal, India.” Funding is variable. You must contact the program coordinator Ali Dymmott here to learn more.
  • “Experience of a community based feeding and education program for malnourished preschool children and their mothers II.” This project takes place in the Philippines, with funding available up to $3,000. You can learn more about it here.

UNE Mary Dolan Memorial Travelling Scholarship

This $3,000 pa scholarship is available to students of archaeology at the University of New England. It allows students to travel to any archaeological site in the world, making it a dream opportunity for cognate students across Australia. There are a few prerequisites.

  • Attach your CV to the application
  • Provide an academic record
  • Outline the proposed research you wish to undergo in relation to that digsite
  • Propose an itinerary
  • Provide two character references, with one being a staff member at UNE

These requirements can look intimidating, but a strong proposal can be the difference between making it and not, even if you’re worried about your CV or academic record.

Anne Lyons Memorial Travel Scholarship

This is for students of law to follow in the footsteps of the scholarship’s benefactor and undergo the study of social justice overseas. It’s worth $6,000 pa, with requirements including:

  • Outlining an itinerary of what you intend, including all expenses
  • A 100 word written statement detailing why you wish to undertake this travel
  • Written academic reference