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ValueNZ $1250
Number offered4 (1 per Division)
Closing date1 October (for travel after November)


Established by the University of Otago Council and Brooker United Travel in 2013, to provide doctoral candidates with support towards travel to an international conference. One scholarship per Division will be offered each year.

Applicants must:

  • Be current University of Otago doctoral candidates who are yet to submit their thesis for examination
  • Have had a paper, presentation or poster arising from their doctoral studies accepted at an international conference

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2019 Awardees

Morgan Meyers, PhD Candidate, Department of Botany
Morgan Meyers Image - BrookerThe Ocean Sciences Meeting is the leading biennial gathering for the global marine science community where we discuss the most relevant topics in ocean research and work towards solutions for a sustainable sea. At the most recent Ocean Sciences Meeting held in San Diego, CA, USA in February 2020, I presented new findings about an important yet understudied marine animal called a salp, which was entitled “Salp Distribution in Waters off the Southeast Coast of New Zealand: Linking Hydrology with Ecosystem Function“. The findings from this research dramatically improve our understanding of New Zealand marine ecology and contribute to the field of zooplankton research.  

I attended numerous sessions on zooplankton ecology, specifically those that linked zooplankton with food web interactions and global change dynamics. I also had the opportunity to catch up with international colleagues and collaborators as well as meet both emerging and well-known researchers in my field whom I would never have met otherwise. This experience greatly benefited the development of my own research, and it was a privilege to have the opportunity to travel to this international conference. I sincerely thank Brooker Travel and helloworld Doctoral Travel Scholarship for the financial support that made my attendance possible.

Melandri Vlok, PhD Candidate, Department of Anatomy  Melandri Vlock Image - Brooker I graciously received funding from the Brooker Travel and helloworld doctoral travel scholarship which covered my return flights to and from Canberra, Australia in order to attend the Australasian Society  of Human Biology (ASHB) conference in December 2019.

I presented my research that looks at how nutritional disease increased in pr historic hunter-gathers from Japan (5000 to 2000 years ago), and how this likely was related to climate change in the past and the loss of resources from forests. The funding provided me with an opportunity  to present my paper to colleagues within the region of Australasia and I benefitted significantly for the networking at the conference.

2018 Awardees

Swati Shah imageSwati Shah, PhD candidate, Department of GeographyThe Annual Meeting of the American Association of Geographers (AAG) is one of the biggest conferences on geography and this year more than 8500 delegates attended the conference. Around 1700 events, sessions and workshops were organised for the Washington DC conference.  I was placed in a special session on 'Geography, Politics and In/fertility' which aimed at understanding the experiences of infertility or fertility among non-Western populations. I presented my paper titled ''People like us need to hide it': Stigma and Surrogacy for the Indian Intending Parents', which went very well. For me this was a great opportunity because it gave me a platform to share my work with well-known geographers working in common research area. I attended sessions on health geography, feminist geography and black geography and had the opportunity to meet other well-known health geographers from US and other countries. These events helped me understand new areas of research occurring in human geography and establishing new networks.

Over all my experience of the five day conference was intense but a great learning experience.  I felt delighted and privileged to attend this conference.  I thank Brooker Travel and helloworld Doctoral Travel Scholarships for providing me support to attend this conference.

2017 Awardees

Jono Barnsley

Jono Barnsley, Chemistry, Science Division (left)
The Brooker United Scholarship assists students like myself to rub shoulders with leaders of our respective fields. The importance of international conferences, where scientific knowledge is dispersed and collaboration is fostered, simply cannot be overstated. I am very grateful for the opportunity to attend ICORS9, APCC'17 and ISPPCC'17 with financial support from Brooker."

Bridget Watson

Bridget Watson, Microbiology and Immunology, Health Science Division
The Brooker United Travel Doctoral Travel Award helped fund my travel to Montana, USA where I attended the 2017 CRISPR-Cas conference. I learned about the very latest research in this fast-moving field, focused on exploring a type of bacterial immune system, which has recently been adapted for genome editing in many biological systems, including humans. The experience was very valuable for my professional development as I met fellow scientists and was able to discuss my project, gaining new insights into my research. Thanks to the Brooker Travel award for making this opportunity possible.

Donia Waseem

Donia Waseem, Marketing, Commerce Division
The Brooker's scholarship helped me attend the conference and thus contributed to advancing the leading role of Otago Business School among the leading scholars in service marketing. It helped become an active part of the service marketing community. Also, the feedback from the conference attendees has assisted me to advance my theoretical contributions in my thesis.”


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