Scholarships to help Indigenous students flourish in STEM Economy

22 August 2017

The search is on for the Indigenous Australians who will play a role in building a ‘clever economy’.

Five million dollars has been set aside by the Origin Foundation – the philanthropic arm of Origin Energy - to fund the Origin Foundation Grant King Indigenous Scholarships, which will provide two students with a full residential scholarship to undertake a degree in Engineering or Science at the University of New South Wales.

Open to people from across the country, there will be a total of eight undergraduates studying with the support of the program each year from 2021.

“Australia’s future prosperity will be reliant on developing a clever economy based on science, engineering and maths,” said Origin Foundation Head Sean Barrett, “There is no reason Indigenous Australians should not play a role in that.

The focus of the Origin Foundation is education and approximately a quarter of its grants go to supporting Indigenous education programs. Former Origin Managing Director Grant King was instrumental in the creation of the Origin Foundation, and will personally mentor recipients of the scholarships.

“It is truly exciting to see a scholarship program of this nature come into fruition. Investing in access to exceptional education and support for indigenous students is crucial to our society. Mentoring a young person through their most formative years can make a significant impact on their future, and I thank both UNSW and Origin Foundation for creating this opportunity, and allowing me to take on this important mentoring role” Mr King said.

The Origin Foundation chose to work with UNSW because of its commitment to equity and access in education, and the university’s exceptional track record supporting Indigenous students through its Indigenous Programs Unit, Nura Gili. 

UNSW offers one of the best tertiary study environments in Australia for Indigenous students with the highest retention rate of Indigenous students in Australia, many of whom were the first in their family to attend university.  The first scholarship recipients will commence at the University of New South Wales in 2018.

The Origin Foundation Grant King Indigenous Scholarship is open for applications now: