2023 - New Colombo Plan (NCP) Scholarship - Expression of Interest

Updated: 19 days ago

Status: Open

Applications open: 3/05/2022
Applications close: 26/06/2022

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About this scholarship

Disclaimer Information - This scholarship is offered and administered by the Australian Government. The information and timeline may be updated in accordance with their update / advice.

The 2023 NCP Scholarship Guidelines and Advice to applicants are now downloadable from to top right hand corner of this website.

The New Colombo Plan is an initiative of the Australian Government which aims to lift knowledge of the Indo-Pacific in Australia and strengthen our people-to-people and institutional relationships, through study and work placement undertaken by Australian undergraduate students in the region.

The New Colombo Plan Scholarship Program will provide opportunities for a selected number of undergraduates to undertake long term study and work experience in the Indo-Pacific region.

Merit based scholarships will be offered to Australia’s best and brightest students who also show a strong commitment to their community and potential as a future leader.

In addition to a study programme of one or two academic semesters, for which scholars must receive credit at their Australian university, scholarship programs may incorporate an internship or mentorship of up to 6 months; intensive in-country language training for up to 1 month and activities that share the scholar’s experience of their program with other awardees and their community in the year following their return to Australia.

2023 NCP locations

Scholarship programs must be conducted only in the following host locations: 

Bangladesh, Bhutan, Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, China, Cook Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, French Polynesia, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Kiribati, Laos, Malaysia, Maldives, Marshall Islands, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nauru, Nepal, New Caledonia, Niue, Pakistan, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Republic of Korea, Samoa, Singapore, Solomon Islands, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu, Vietnam

Meet the 2022 NCP Alumni Ambassador - Connor Kiss (Curtin University)

Meet the 2017 NCP Scholar - Georgia Ivers (Curtin University)

Meet the WA NCP Alumni - Isla Munro (Curtin University)

New Colombo Plan - Your questions answered (A series of short interviews with previous NCP scholars and alumni about many aspects of the scholarships (and mobility programs) from applications through internships.

New Colombo Plan - Scholar Stories

 (A series of short video profiles of NCP Scholarship alumni outlining how their NCP experience has impacted on their lives, careers and ongoing connections with the Indo-Pacific.

  • Current Students

  • Centre for Aboriginal Studies
  • Faculty of Business and Law
  • Faculty of Health Sciences
  • Faculty of Humanities
  • Faculty of Science & Engineering
    • Science courses
    • Engineering courses
    • Western Australian School of Mines (WASM)

  • Undergraduate

  • Curtin students wanting to study overseas

  • Australian Citizen

  • Merit Based

The New Colombo Plan Scholarship will provide:

  • a one off travel allowance of $2,500
  • a one off establishment allowance of $2,500
  • a monthly scholarship allowance of $2,500
  • a mental health allowance of $1,000
  • health and travel insurance for the duration of their overseas Scholarship Program
  • a dedicated case manager for the duration of their Scholarship Program who provides services including pre-departure briefings, advice on health and travel insurance, advice and assistance relating to accommodation, and payment of allowances.
  • Full-time language training course: Where incurred, payment of in-country language training fees range between up to $1,500 (program duration - one month or less) and up to $10,000 (program duration - more than one month, up to six months) will be made directly to the language-training provider.
  • Part-time language training course: Where incurred, payment of in-country language training fees up to $1,500, minus any amount paid as above (language training fees).

Where a Scholar will be studying abroad as a fee paying international student the Scholarship will provide:

  • Payment of up to one Academic Year’s international tuition fees to a maximum of $20,000 (up to $10,000 per semester or $6,666 per trimester); payable directly to the Host Institution (includes student service and amenities fees).

Please note:

  • The Scholarship will only provide for international tuition fees if no current exchange agreement place is available between the Home University and the Host Institution.
  • If the Scholar’s study abroad is under the auspices of an exchange program and the Host Institution does not charge tuition fees, the allocation for tuition fees will not be provided.

In addition to the benefits outlined above, New Colombo Plan Fellows (the top-ranked scholar in each location) will be awarded $1,000 to purchase study materials for use during their Scholarship Program.

Scholarship Details

All undergraduate degrees

Level of study:

  • Applicants must be undertaking a Bachelor’s degree level programme (Pass or Honours) at a domestic, onshore Australian university campus, at the commencement of the scholarship. Applicants must be in at least the second year of their programme at the commencement of the scholarship.
  • Applicants must be admitted in an Australian university at the time of application and throughout their scholarship. Applicants must receive credit for their overseas study programme towards their degree at their home Australian university.

Applicants must:

  • be an Australian Citizen;
  • not be a current citizen or permanent resident of their proposed Primary Location or any Secondary Location;
  • be enrolled in an Australian university at the time of application and throughout their scholarship;
  • be between 18 and 30 years of age (inclusive) for non-Indigenous Applicants and between 18 and 35 years of age (inclusive) for Indigenous Applicants on 1 January 2023;
  • be undertaking a Bachelor Degree or Bachelor Honours Degree when the Scholarship Program commences;
  • be at least the second year of your program when the Scholarship Program commences;
  • be high achieving students with a minimum Course Weighted Average (CWA) of 70*;
  • not be undertaking another Australian Government funded off-shore scholarship at the commencement of, or concurrently with the Scholarship Program;
  • not be a previous recipient of a New Colombo Plan Scholarship; and
  • not be an employee of the branch of DFAT that administers the NCP.

(*) First year students without CWA can still apply as long as CWA will be available by 6 July 2022.

Additionally, the applicant’s proposed scholarship program must:

  • be undertaken in one of the eligible Indo-Pacific destinations;
  • not be undertaken at a host institution in a region with a travel advice classification of Level 4 by Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT);
  • not be undertaken at an offshore campus of an Australian university in the host destination unless no alternative arrangements are feasible; and
  • commence between the specified dates in the guidelines

Please note:

Successful applicants are not allowed to commence another Australian Government funded off-shore scholarship Program or mobility grant (including a New Colombo Plan Mobility Program grant) while undertaking their New Colombo Plan Scholarship program.

Application process

Timeline (Curtin University)

3 May 2022 - Expression of interest opens at Curtin University

18 May 2022 - Curtin NCP Scholarship Info Session (12.00-1.00pm, Building 500.Room 1102AB - to be confirmed)

26 June 2022 - Expression of interest submission closes at Curtin University

15 July 2022 - Outcome of Curtin nomination process available via Scholarship Channel within Student OASIS

20 July 2022 - Nominated students to attend the feedback workshop (12.00 - 1.00pm Location: TBA)

20 July - 16 Aug 2022 - Nominated students will be required to undergo a police check as part of NCP Scholarship Nomination process organised by Curtin Scholarships Office.

Timeline (Nominated NCP Scholarship Applicants)

20 July 2022 - NCP team will send nominated students application guide and an invitation to complete application at online application

16 August 2022 - Applications close at 11.30pm Australian Eastern Standard Time (AEST)

Sep 2022 - Applications are shortlisted and shortlisted applicants are notified

Sep/Oct 2022 - Shortlisted applicants are interviewed (online / video platform)

Nov 2022 - All successful and unsuccessful applicants are notified of the outcome of their application

Dec 2022 - Successful scholars published on NCP website

1 Jan – 15 Dec 2023 - Successful scholars undertake their NCP program



Step 1: Research & Planning

  • Read the NCP Scholarship Guidelines and the Advice to Applicants.
  • Identify and select your host location and institution in the region where you can receive full-time credits towards your current course of study
  • Visit Curtin Go Global website for more information on student exchange and our exchange partners
  • Or research and find a non-partner university in the region where you can receive full-time credits towards your current course of study
  • Find two referees (one must be a Curtin academic staff) who know you very well and able to articulate your abilities and potential against the selection criteria - If one referee cannot attest all criteria, please ensure other referee can attest them substantially.
  • Important / useful information should be read before you commence your application. You will need to have a great understanding of the New Colombo Plan's objectives and be able to articulate how you and your study plan can contribute towards the program's objectives and benefit Australia. Download from top right hand side of this page.

Step 3: Access Curtin online application form

  • Applications are to be submitted using the online application form. Access the form by clicking on the ‘Apply Online’ button on the top right-hand side of this page

Step 4: Complete

  • Complete the application form online
  • Following documentation must be submitted as part of expression of interest process
    • proof of Australian Citizenship (a copy of current passport)
    • confirmation of Aboriginality (if applicable)
    • proof of study abroad program arrangement* (applicable for Study Abroad students who wish to study at non-partner university)
      • an evidence that a host university offers a study abroad program and units available in English (E.g. a print out from a host university website) statement and supporting documents against selection criteria statement
    • 2 reference letters attesting the applicant's significant merit, abilities and potential in relation to the selection criteria
  • Application form can be saved at any point of the process
  • Tips on how to complete your application can be found under the Applying for scholarships link on the scholarships website

(*) Applicants do not require evidence of acceptance at their host university at the time of expression of interest stage. However, at the time of submitting their application (after the nomination process), applicants must provide at least one of the following pieces of documentation confirming their affiliation with their host institution

Step 5: 

  • Closing date is listed at the top of the page
  • Incomplete applications will not be assessed
  • Once submitted, application status will change to submitted

Step 6: 

Application receipt will be sent to the email address provided when you created your Curtin account, once your application has been submitted

Step 7: Assessment

  • Applications will be assessed by an assessment panel using the following criteria:
    • Academic excellence at the tertiary level (25 per cent weighting)
      Assessment of this criterion will relate to the Applicant’s demonstrated higher-order cognitive skills, creativity, innovation, communication skills, problem-solving skills and critical thinking skills in their university study. Applicants may also draw on academic achievements such as academic awards and commendations, publications, or other examples of academic excellence at the tertiary level. High school academic achievements will not be considered. (Maximum 300 words.)
    • Leadership and engagement in the community (25 per cent weighting)
      Assessment of this criterion will relate to the Applicant’s demonstrated leadership in the community, including volunteer and not-for-profit roles and/or activities they have undertaken in their local community, nationally, overseas and/or in their university. (Maximum 300 words.)
    • Adaptability and resilience (25 per cent weighting) 
      Assessment of this criterion will relate to the Applicant’s demonstrated ability to adapt to change, thrive in a different environment, and resilience in the face of challenges. (Maximum 300 words.)
    • Ability to contribute to NCP’s strategic objective and outcomes (25 per cent weighting)
      Assessment of this criterion will relate to the Applicant’s demonstrated understanding of the Strategic objective and Outcomes of the NCP program, and how the Applicant and their proposed Scholarship program would contribute to the NCP Strategic objective and Outcomes, including on return to Australia. (Maximum 300 words.)
    • Other Considerations
      Where Applicants have similarly meritorious claims in relation to the Assessment criteria, preference may be given to:
      • Applicants proposing:
      • longer periods of Study components,
      • an Internship component or a Mentorship,
      • a period (or longer periods) of Language training, and/or
      • a Scholarship program with coherent correlation across the proposed Study component, Language training and Internship component
      • achieving diversity of placement across Host locations
      • representation from diverse student groups including but not limited to, Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander students, students from a low socio-economic status background, students from regional/remote areas or universities, students who are first in their immediate family to attend university, students across the genders, female students studying in nontraditional fields, students with a disability, and students from a non-English speaking background
      • diversity across fields of study and Australian universities
      • how the proposal contributes to value with relevant money.

Step 8: Expression of Interest Outcome

  • Shortlisted students will be sent a request by email in mid-July to undergo a police check as part of NCP Scholarship Nomination process organised by Curtin Scholarships Office
  • Outcome of nomination process (both successful and unsuccessful) will be available on 15 July 2022 via the Scholarships Channel (Student OASIS)



  • Curtin University will nominate up to ten scholarship applicants.
  • Nominated students are strongly encouraged to attend the feedback workshop organised by Curtin University at 20 July 2022 (12.00 - 1.00pm Location: TBA).
  • Nominated students will receive application guidance and an invitation to complete online application on 20 July 2022. (**)
  • Applicants must submit their application and supporting documentation online by 16 August 2022, 11.30pm AEST.

(**) Applicants are strongly encouraged to commence their online application process on 4 August and provide their two referees contact details so that referees will have sufficient time to provide well considered reports online against the selection criteria. You can only lodge your online application if your referees have already submitted their reference reports.



  • New Colombo Plan Scholars will be selected through a competitive, merit-based selection process.
  • Shortlisted applicants will attend their interviews during September - October 2022
  • Interview panels may comprise representatives from among the following: government officials, members of the business community, academics, diplomatic corps representatives or others as determined appropriate.
  • All successful and unsuccessful applicants will be advised by the New Colombo Plan Scholarship team regarding the outcome of their application.
  • Successful scholars will be announced and their details are published on the New Colombo Plan website November - December 2022.
  • Successful scholars will commence their programs between 1 January and 15 December 2023.
  • The top-ranked candidate for each location will be acknowledged as a New Colombo Plan Fellow. Fellows are encouraged to play a strong role in promoting the New Colombo Plan while on their Scholarship Program, and as part of the alumni network on their return.


Useful resources
Curtin Leadership Centre: A series of modules available online at Curtin Challenge on skills ranging from professionalism to self-awareness.


Note from the NCP Secretariat

  • Travel to any host location will be subject to the Australian Government's Smartraveller travel advice at the time of travel. (Scholars must not travel to a host location or region within a host location for which the Smartraveller advisory recommends 'Do not travel' or 'Reconsider your need to travel' at the time of travel, as per section 5.5.4 of the scholarship guidelines).


For enquiries relating to scholarships nomination and applications process, please contact the Scholarships Office

Scholarships Office
E: scholarships@curtin.edu.au

For questions relating to the host institution and exchange components, please contact the Study Abroad and Student Exchange Office.

Go Global Office

Further Information

NCP Scholarship - Previous rounds information is available here.

Tips on writing a successful NCP scholarship application (NCP Videos)

Below are links to videos with information on the NCP program, including why students should apply for a NCP scholarship, tips on how to write a good NCP scholarship application and NCP scholar success stories. I encourage you to share this at your university including to nominated students.

Why should you apply for a New Colombo Plan scholarship?

  • https://youtu.be/k6VA5w--o0A
  • https://youtu.be/TnvpyiU-xYM

Tips on writing a successful NCP scholarship application

  • https://youtu.be/JPz-IE9gh1g
  • https://youtu.be/wP7yG7XqlFk

New Colombo Plan “Your questions answered”

  • https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLicI2lfKDSZ0Y5fvpOu9S8CNg6cT91Xua

New Colombo Plan “Scholar Stories”

  • https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLicI2lfKDSZ3m1zpQBjk4e1LnQy3nNj7j
  • https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLicI2lfKDSZ0m1B_WbKyC9DA_tULQ2jE4

New Colombo Plan - Scholarship Application Tips by Global Society

  • https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cryx-Dwyi6g&feature=youtu.be 

New Colombo Plan website
For more information on the New Colombo Plan, please visit the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade website at: www.dfat.gov.au/new-colombo-plan


Apply Online
Useful Information

  • Engaging Asia.pdf
  • 2017 foreign policy white paper.pdf
  • Developing an Asia Capable Workforce.pdf
  • Australia in the Asian Century - White Paper 2012.pdf
  • NCP Scholarship Application - Bachelor Student Feasibility Letter Template.DOCX
  • NCP Scholarship Application - Honours Student Feasibility Letter template.DOCX
  • NCP Scholarship Program Guidelines 2023 round.pdf
  • Sample NCP Scholarship Agreement 2023.pdf
  • NAP Scholarship Advice to Applicants 2023 round.pdf

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