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Leadership development key to Westpac postgraduate scholarship

15  June 2018


Westpac is calling on innovators across the country to apply for the Westpac Future Leaders Scholarship, a unique postgraduate scholarship program supporting outstanding individuals who have a vision to help shape Australia’s future through their work and studies.

One of the Scholarship’s biggest drawcards is a nine-month bespoke Leadership Development Program and the opportunity to spend up to six months abroad to gain global experience.

Michael Hall studied a Masters in Bioinformatics at the University of Queensland with the support of a Westpac Future Leaders Scholarship in 2016. He is now seven months into a PhD in the same field at the University of Cambridge in the UK.

“The Westpac Future Leaders Scholarship has been so pivotal in me being where I am now. A large portion of the self-belief I have developed over the last two years has come from the Scholarship’s Leadership Development Program. I never would have dreamed I would end up doing my PhD at the University of Cambridge, but here I am.”

In addition to up to $120,000 in financial support, successful recipients gain lifelong membership to the Westpac100 Scholars Network. Each year the Network grows by 100 Scholars from each of the five scholarships that form part of the broader Westpac Scholarship Program.


For Westpac Scholar Alex Schumann-Gillett, three years into her PhD in computational chemistry at the Australian National University, it’s this network that is most valuable.

“Since 2016, the Westpac Scholars community has grown to over 300 people. That is over 300 people who are actively working to create a better Australia. With the promise of 100 new scholars each year, forever, I can only imagine the things that people will create, and the better Australia they will shape.”

“Westpac Scholars care about their cause, and their passion drives them to do something about it. That passion; that selflessness; that motivation—it is the essence of a Westpac Scholar,” Alex said.

Susan Bannigan, CEO, Westpac Bicentennial Foundation, says, “The Westpac Future Leaders Scholarship supports the next generation of game changers. We’re looking for individuals who are able to demonstrate both academic excellence and generosity of spirit. They are highly aspirational, passionate people committed to creating meaningful change through their studies.”

About the Westpac Future Leaders Scholarship Program

The Westpac Future Leaders Scholarship is one of five scholarships offered through the Westpac Scholarship Program which awards 100 scholarships every year, forever. The program was created in 2014 to help to support individuals with the drive and ideas to shape the future of Australia.

17 Westpac Future Leaders Scholarships, valued up to $120,000 per student over two to three years, are available to 2019 PhD and Masters students from any discipline. Applicants must demonstrate how their research or course work aligns with one of the Scholarship program’s key focus areas - technology and innovation, driving social change or strengthening Australia’s ties with Asia.

PhD students may also receive the RTP scholarship in addition to the Westpac Future Leaders Scholarship, providing value of over $200,000 collectively.

2019 applications are open from 15 June to 5 September.

The nine partner universities for the Westpac Future Leaders Scholarship are:

  • The University of Adelaide
  • The Australian National University
  • The University of Melbourne
  • Monash University
  • The University of Queensland
  • The University of Sydney
  • University of Tasmania
  • University of New South Wales
  • University of Western Australia

For information on the Westpac Future Leaders Scholarship, visit