Searching for a Scholarship


There are many scholarships available for a wide range of talented children and teens, you just need to know where to look.

The government, schools and many independent organisations provide financial assistance to students and their families through a number of bursary and scholarship schemes. A bursary typically involves some form of school fee concession and may be awarded where the family of a student is in particular financial need. A scholarship is usually offered on merit: the selection process may involve assessment of academic performance or an audition (in the case of a music scholarship).

finding them

  • Your Careers teacher can advise what scholarships, grants and awards you might qualify for. They can also help you with application forms.
  • Ask community, sports, religious and other groups you’re involved in to see whether they provide scholarships.
  • If you’re interested in a specific school or course, check to see if they provide scholarships.
  • If you belong to a minority group, you may be eligible for a grant or bursary.


Every award will have its own form to fill in, with its own specific guidelines. However, regardless of which grant you’re applying for, make sure your handwriting is neat and the thoughts you express clear, be positive but objective, and show what you hope to gain by being awarded the financial support.

scholarships for school students

  • BayerBoost is an environmental scholarship designed to provide senior secondary students experience in environmental research during their summer holidays.
  • Music scholarships are available at Macleans College and St Andrew’s College.
  • You can get sporting, academic or performing arts scholarships to St Margaret’s College, starting in Year 11.

scholarships for private schools

Aspire Scholarship

The Aspire Scholarship has been designed for students from low-income families who would like to attend a private secondary school. Administered through the Ministry of Education, it provides up to $15,000 per year financial assistance towards the costs of private schooling. The scholarship does not cover boarding fees, and cannot be used at state or state-integrated schools.

Kristin Scholarship

Eligibility is limited to current Year 12 students who will complete Year 13 at Kristin School next year. There are three categories awarded, each to the value of 50% of tuition cost: academic, cultural, sporting. Aspects of character and leadership within the school community are considered in each of the scholarships.

ACG Strathallan Scholarship

Applicants are assessed with respect to scholastic, musical and artistic abilities, attitude and motivation, ability to benefit from the special features of the College, as well as the financial circumstances of the family. Sibling Scholarship may be awarded for the duration of the period in which four (or more) children from the same family are in full attendance at ACG Strathallan.


The King’s Scholarships foster the pursuit of excellence outlined in the College motto, ‘Virtus Pollet’. Scholarships and bursaries are available each year, largely for those who would not otherwise be able to attend the College.

Scot’s College

Scot’s College in Wellington offers a number of internal and external scholarships for year 9-12 students.

scholarships for tertiary education

NZQA Scholarships

New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA) offers recognition and monetary reward to top students in their last year of schooling. New Zealand Scholarship (as it is known) is designed to extend the very best students and to reward very able students who are going on to tertiary study. Scholarship candidates are expected to demonstrate high-level critical thinking, abstraction and generalisation, and to integrate, synthesise and apply knowledge, skills, understanding and ideas to complex situations. Students can enter for Scholarship through an accredited New Zealand secondary school.


A range of Fulbright New Zealand Graduate Awards is available to New Zealand students to undertake postgraduate study or research in the US.

The Arts

Want to study music, writing, art? Check out:


A comprehensive list of sports grants can be found here: Of particular interest is the Prime Minister’s Scholarship Programme which enables talented New Zealand athletes to pursue tertiary study and elite level sport development at the same time.

other tertiary scholarships

Most universities and some professions (such as teaching) offer scholarship programmes. Memorial scholarships also exist, such as the Barbara Wood Memorial Foundation

specific scholarships

Certain groups of people may be eligible for specific scholarships:

  • Maori –
  • Pasifika –
  • Special Needs Students –
  • Women –

the breakout database

BreakOut is a database of more than 3,800 funding schemes that cover study, professional development, research, travel, arts, sport, and community projects. You can join its membership (at a cost), or you can search it for free at:

  • over 200 secondary schools
  • most universities and many polytechnics
  • public libraries
  • Citizens Advice Bureau
  • some community centres

dance scholarships

These are some of the dance scholarships funded by private donors. Note the terms and conditions (e.g. they don’t cover the additional levy for gym, internet, student facilities).

  • Janet Berney Memorial Scholarship
  • Christchurch Dance Education Bursary Trust
  • Katrina Todd Scholarship
  • Dowling-Neylan Scholarship
  • Hawkes Bay Ballet & Dance Inc
  • Jerome Robbins Foundation (USA)

They cover tuition costs only and are available to New Zealand and Australian students who have successfully completed at least one year of study at NZSD. Scholarship recipients are chosen by the Director, Pastoral Care Manager and academic tutor based on academic excellence and the criteria surrounding the scholarship (i.e. hardship, gender, geographical location). The decision is confirmed by the scholarship donor and ratified by the Board of Trustees. The School also offers internally-funded scholarships to New Zealand students who already hold a place at the School. These also cover tuition fees only and are available on hardship ground

[byline]Yvonne Eve Walus is an education specialist, a senior consultant to Creative Learning Systems in Auckland, and a mother of two[/byline]

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