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Scholarships, prizes, and postgraduate support

Scholarships available at the University of Otago

Most of our PhD students and many of our MSc students are supported by scholarships. Both local and international students may apply for these. 

If you wish to apply for a scholarship, we strongly encourage you to contact us first to discuss potential thesis work. Email geology@otago.ac.nz, and also copy your email to the staff member whose interests overlap most with your interests.  If we know about your interests and background, we can offer advice that may strengthen your application.

James Park Scholarship in Geology

Founded in 1958 under the will of Mrs Park in memory of her husband, Professor James Park, Dean of the Faculty of Mines and Metallurgy from 1901-1931. The Scholarship may be held only by a student whose thesis work is concerned with the occurrence, treatment, or utilisation of New Zealand mineral resources.

Campbell-White Scholarship

The Campbell-White Scholarship was established in memory of the late Mr Charles Campbell-White, a graduate in Metallurgical Engineering at the University of Otago (1949).

NZ$6,000 for a student studying full-time towards a degree of Bachelor of Surveying, Bachelor of Applied Science, or Bachelor of Science majoring in Geology, Surveying, or Applied Geology.

Jack Bradshaw Scholarship in Geology

Established in 1992 by Judith A.K. Terpstra in memory of her husband, J.Y. Bradshaw (1951-1991), MSc (Western Washington University) PhD (Otago), a student in the Department of Geology from 1979 to 1985. The Scholarship shall be awarded by the University Council on the recommendation of the Head of the Department of Geology to a Geology student  enrolled for the degree of Master of Science or Doctor of Philosophy to assist with their research expenses.

Prizes in the Department of Geology

Prizes listed below are awarded annually to Otago geology students. Students do not apply for the prizes; rather, awards are made on the basis of performance in the relevant course(s).  Geology students are also eligible to apply for certain Otago awards, for example, the Campbell-White Scholarship. 

J.D. Campbell Prize in Geology – 300-level project

Established in 1984 by a group of friends and former students of Associate Professor J.D. Campbell.

The prize is awarded annually by the University Council on the recommendation of the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Sciences), to the student presenting the best independent project for Geology at 300-level.

The value of the Prize will be as set down in the current schedule of prizes.

D.S. Coombs Prize – 400-level

Established in 1991 in honour of Douglas Saxon Coombs, MSc(NZ) PhD(Cantab) HonDSc(Geneva) FRSNZ HonFGS, Professor of Geology from 1956 to 1990 and Emeritus Professor from 1990.

The prize is awarded annually by the University Council on the recommendation of the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Sciences), to the best student of Geology at 400-level.

The value of the Prize will be as set down in the current schedule of prizes, but with the approval of the Head of the Department of Geology may consist of a cash grant towards the expenses of geological research.

James Park Memorial Prize – Economic or Resource Geology

Founded in 1948 by the late Mrs Park in memory of her husband, Professor James Park, Dean of the Faculty of Mines and Metallurgy from 1901 to 1931.

The prize may be awarded by the University Council on the recommendation of the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Sciences), to students of special merit in Economic Geology (geology of mineral deposits) or in Resource Geology.

The value of the Prize will be as set down in the current schedule of prizes.

Ulrich Memorial Medal – Mineralogy at 200-level

Founded by subscribers to a fund for the purpose of providing a Memorial Prize in the School of Mines. It was awarded for the first time at the end of the session of 1902. In honour of Professor G. H. F. Ulrich, Professor of Mining and Director of the School of Mines from 1878 to 1900.

The prize is awarded annually by the University Council on the recommendation of the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Sciences), to the best student studying mineralogy in Geology classes at 200-level.

The value of the Prize consists of a medal and cash as set down in the current schedule of prizes.

University Book Shop Prize in Geology – 100-level

Established in 1985 by the Directors of the University Book Shop Otago Limited, the prize is awarded annually by the University Council on the recommendation of the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Sciences), to the student with the highest level of attainment in Geology at 100-level.

The Prize consists of books to the value set down in the current prize schedule.

Geology student research support

Postgraduate students may be able to obtain financial support for their research – up to NZ$3000 annually for PhD students and NZ$1000 for MSc and BSc(Hons) students.

Funding to enable PhD students to attend one international conference may be available via application to the Division of Sciences.

Grants are generally available to enable postgraduate students to attend NZ Geoscience Society, or equivalent, domestic conferences.

Bob Carter Fieldwork Fund

This fund, named in honour of Otago Geology alumnus and former staff member Dr Bob Carter, is used to help postgraduate students conduct fieldwork in remote and geologically significant areas. It was formed in 2016 after a donation from the US-based Alumni of the University of Otago in America Inc.

J.F.A. Taylor Fund

James Francis Alexander Taylor attended the University of Otago from 1939. He graduated with BSc and BE in 1945/46. In December 1993, J.F.A. Taylor passed away and he "left a legacy to the ‘School of Mines’ at Otago University of Dunedin (now Department of Geology). This was a sum of NZ $10,000 “to be applied by it in the field of education relating to the research & development of mineral resources in NZ”. As set up "The J F A Taylor Fund will […] support fieldwork on mineral deposits, which can be awarded annually, either in conjunction with the James Park Scholarship, or separately as the case demands." The Taylor family added another NZ$5,000 in 2002.

Benson Fund

William Noel Benson was Professor of Geology at the University of Otago from 1916 to 1949. Benson’s legacy lives on at Otago, both intellectually and through the Benson Fund, which was started by a bequest from Benson’s Estate to support field-based research. Later contributions from companies and from alumni have expanded the Fund. Interest from the Benson Fund is used to support the field work of many of our students.

Geology Graduate Student Research Fund

Established in 1991 by colleagues and friends of J.D. Campbell and Tony Reay to celebrate 25 years of service to the Geology Department. The purpose is to facilitate and encourage research by Geology students at the University of Otago.