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Welcome to the Summer Studentship programme at the University of Otago, Wellington

Every year the University of Otago, Wellington hosts the Summer Studentship Research Programme which takes place over the November to February period and is made up of 10 weeks.

Participating students will get an introduction to research methods in fields that are of interest to them, such as public health, clinical or laboratory-based research.

The programme is heavily dependent upon the financial generosity of external organisations, individuals and UOW departments that contribute funding for projects.

The Scholarship is to the value of NZ$5,000 this is paid as a non-taxable educational grant during the studentship; with the aim of encouraging students to take up a research career in New Zealand.

The Summer Research Scholarships are open only to undergraduate students who are returning to study at the University of Otago or other New Zealand Universities the following year. Students who have graduated, or currently hold a Doctoral or Masters are not eligible for a Summer Research Scholarship.

The process

The process begins in late-April of every year, when a call for proposals is sent out to all UOW campus staff and CCDHB staff who have an affiliation to the University of Otago, Wellington.  

Projects approved by a select-panel will be released in the first week of August on this web page. [Please note: Some projects released may not already have funding secured.] 

Students are encouraged to apply directly to the project’s supervisor with a  cover letter and a one-page CV. The successful student, will receive an email from the programme administrator with the necessary paperwork to complete. 

Some projects will require assistance in securing funding, the programme administrator will start approaching seasonal funders once a list of approved projects are confirmed. The cutoff date for projects that require assistance in obtaining funding is 31st May; late submissions will be declined and only considered if funding is confirmed.  Once funding is secured all parties will be notified and the project can go ahead in November.

The time-frame of the Summer Studentship Programme is from November to February (10-weeks excluding the Christmas and New Year public holidays).  The judging of the final reports is done in mid-to-late-March.

One of the conditions in the programme is at the end of the studentship the Student must have submitted a final report (consisting of a lay report and a scientific report) to the programme administrator by the February deadline. 

A select-panel will review the reports submitted and choose three or four finalists to take part in the oral presentation competition in early-March. 

The competition takes place at the University of Otago, Wellington. The finalists will present a 15-minute talk. The winner of the Oral Presentation Competition will be awarded the University of Otago, Wellington Summer Studentship Prize.

Information for supervisors

Supervisors must remember that projects need to be in the health-related field.  Projects submitted must have a University of Otago, Wellington academic staff member as the main supervisor. 

If Ethics is required for a project, supervisors should seek ethics approval when they submit the project application. 

Full ethical approval must be obtained before the project can be advertised to any students. A copy of the current letter of ethical approval must be provided to the programme administrator.

Application forms are completed online.

Please contact for assistance.

Supervisors must read the Summer Studentship Handbook to ascertain the rules of the studentship programme and supervisor's obligations under the scheme. 

Information for students

Students must read the Summer Studentship Handbook and agree to the terms and conditions. 

Occasionally the programme administrator will be sending out information, updates and reminders to students interested in possible projects.

To register on our database for these email-outs please go to:

Projects will be listed on this webpage as they become available between August and October.  

Who can apply for the Summer Studentship programme?

The Summer Studentship is open to any undergraduate student who is currently enrolled at the University of Otago and at any New Zealand universities.

The purpose of the studentship is to encourage undergraduate students into research careers and therefore is not designed for those with PhDs, master's or who have already graduated.

Contact details

Please email