New Colombo Plan Scholarship Program

A once-in-a-lifetime opportunity

The Australian Government's New Colombo Plan (NCP) Scholarship Program supports high-achieving Australian undergraduate students to study and work in the Indo-Pacific region.

To apply for a New Colombo Plan Scholarship, you must first be nominated by UQ. ​ 
Expressions of interest for the 2024 Scholarship Program will close 31 May 2023

Submit your Expression of Interest

Hear from former scholars

Watch all 19 videos

Scholars answer your questions

Watch all 21 videos


The Scholarship will provide:

  • Tuition fees of up to $20,000:
    • if you study as a fee-paying international student (rather than at an institution where an official exchange agreement with UQ is in place), the Scholarship will provide payment of up to two semesters/three trimesters’ international tuition fees to a maximum of $20,000 ($10,000 per semester based or $6666 per trimester-based Study Period); payable directly to the host institution (includes student service and amenities fees)
    • payment of in-country language training fees up to $10,000 
  • a travel allowance of $2500
  • an establishment allowance of $2500
  • a monthly stipend of $2500
  • a mental health allowance of $1000
  • health and travel insurance for the duration of the overseas Scholarship Program
  • a dedicated case manager for the duration of the Scholarship Program 
  • private sector sponsorship: all scholars are eligible and will be considered for the private sector sponsorship in addition to the NCP Scholarship


Applicants must:

  • be an Australian citizen; not be a current citizen or permanent resident of their proposed host location(s)
  • be enrolled in and undertaking, until completion of all study components of the NCP Scholarship Program, at least one Bachelor Degree or Bachelor Honours Degree at an Australian campus of an Australian university. (If a Scholar concludes their home degree requirements upon the completion of the mandatory study component of their NCP Scholarship Program, they may apply to DFAT for approval to continue to undertake any remaining component(s) of their NCP Scholarship Program. This will be considered on a case by case basis.)
  • be between 18 and 30 years of age (inclusive) for non-Indigenous applicants, or between 18 and 35 years of age (inclusive) for Indigenous applicants, on 1 January 2024
  • have achieved a minimum 70 per cent graded average or equivalent for their undergraduate course at the time of application, as determined by the nominating Home university
  • not be a previous recipient of a New Colombo Plan Scholarship (may have received a New Colombo Plan Mobility Grant)
  • not be an employee of the branch of DFAT that administers the NCP
  • commence their Scholarship program between 1 January 2024 and 15 December 2024
  • Scholars must continue to meet these Eligibility requirements during the term of their Scholarship.
  • Additional eligibility upon the announcement of 2024 NCP Scholarship Guidelines may apply. 

As students are required to provide their grade point average and demonstrate academic achievement at the tertiary level, applicants should have studied at the University of Queensland for a minimum of one semester before applying. Applicants wishing to participate in their Scholarship study component through the UQ semester exchange program, must also ensure they meet the necessary application requirements and deadlines set by the Internships and Global Experiences Team. 

Application assistance

Before submitting your expression of interest

  • ensure you have room in your program to study overseas for a semester, by completing a progression check and if needed, reach out to your faculty for assistance.
  • research the available host universities courses you'd like to study abroad to ensure there is a host university that can meet you academic requirements. For assistance or questions about host universities, contact the Internships and Global Experiences Team. Applicants wishing to study at a host university that is not listed as a UQ exchange partner, please contact Global Partnerships for advice. 
  • consider how long you would like to study abroad and the total duration of the scholarship.

For advice about reflecting on your experiences to effectively answer the questions in the expression of interest, we recommend seeing the Careers Development Team or viewing the free self-paced course EMPLOY101x, developed by UQ and delivered through the online edX platform.

How to apply

  1. Complete UQ’s Expression of Interest by 31 May 2023.
  2. Be chosen as one of UQ’s 15 nominees
  3. When invited, apply to the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT)

For application assistance, please contact Global Partnerships by email or on (07) 3346 9924.

Anticipated timeline

Date Activity
31 May 2023Deadline to submit an expression of interest to UQ
26-28 June 2023Shortlisting interviews held by UQ
10 July 2023Students nominated by UQ
19 July – 15 August 2023Nominated students submit an online application to the DFAT
21 July 2023DFAT Application Tips Webinar
Late August – Early September 2023Students shortlisted by DFAT
14 September 2023DFAT Interview Tips Webinar
18 September – 28 September 2023Interviews with DFAT and country representatives 
Early November 2023Successful and unsuccessful applicants notified
Late November – Early December 2023DFAT Award Ceremony and Pre-depature Training
1 January – 15 December 2024Scholars commence scholarships

Note: Dates listed are anticipated and are subject to change upon the announcement of the 2024 NCP Scholarship Guidelines and Application Timelines. 


You may apply to undertake the program in the following locations.

Flag of Bangladesh


Flag of Bhutan


Flag of Brunei

Brunei Darussalam

Flag of Cambodia


Flag of China


Flag of Cook Islands

Cook Islands

Flag of FSM

Micronesia, Federated States

Flags of French Polynesia

French Polynesia

Flag of Fiji


Flag of Hong Kong

Hong Kong (SAR)

Flag of India


Flag of Indonesia


Flag of Japan


Flag of Kiribati


Flag of Laos


Flag of Malaysia


Flag of the Maldives


Flag of Marshall Islands

Marshall Islands

Flag of Mongolia


Flag of Myanmar


Flag of Nauru


Flag of Nepal    



Flag of New Caledonia

New Caledonia

Flag of Niue


Flag of Pakistan


Flag of Palau


Flag of Papua New Guinea

Papua New Guinea

Flag of The Philippines

The Philippines

Flag of South Korea

South Korea (ROK)

Flag of Samoa


Flag of Singapore    



Flag of Solomon Islands

Solomon Islands

Flag of Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka

Taiwan (ROC)

Flag of Thailand


Flag of Timor Leste


Flag of Tonga


Flag of Tuvalu


Flag of Vanuatu


Flag of Vietnam