If you feel passionately about a particular field of study or subject, or about educational disadvantage, you may wish to create a named scholarship, prize or grant.

Many of our donors have established scholarships in the name of a parent or loved one, as a lasting memorial which will continue to change lives and to help new generations to reach their potential.

A named scholarship requires a minimum commitment of $5,000 per year for three years.

Larger gifts can be used towards establishing perpetual funds, to enable the scholarship to make an ongoing contribution now and into the future. Please contact us to discuss the level of gift required to establish this fund.

If you are interested in creating a sponsored or named scholarship, prize or grant for a specific area of the University please contact Darren Garbin, Advancement Officer (Corporate and Named Scholarships) at, Ph: 8302 7030.

The scholarships and grants listed on this page represent just some of those on offer at the University of South Australia.

Recent Pank Family scholarship and grant recipients

Pank Family generosity helping students’ access higher education

The Panks are a remarkable family. Not only have they worked hard to create their success, they have also chosen to share the fruits of their efforts. Since 1996, the Pank family’s generous contributions to UniSA have helped almost 200 students attain a tertiary education.

Dr David Pank AM and his wife Margaret were passionate supporters of South Australia’s business and education communities and are remembered for the key role they played in the progression of higher education in the state. Their pledge to help make tertiary education more accessible to young South Australians has lived on through their children, David Pank, Jane Newland, Susan Hunt and Robbie Baxter who have also established encouragement prizes for promising students.

“We want to help people to change their circumstances; to encourage them to realise that they can be the first in their family to get a tertiary education, to be a role model for their community” - Jane Newland

Cowan Grant supports a growing family of scholars

Victoria Zawko, recipient of the Cowan Young Endeavour Grant

Marnie Cowan and her son Bob had a vision in 1994 of helping financially stressed students achieve their dream of a higher education. The Cowan Grant fund was established in memory of Marnie and her husband Bill, and has been managed by family members who have since helped deliver more than $2.7 million to help over 1200 students reach their education goals.

The Cowan Grant offers several opportunities at UniSA, with particular emphasis on supporting students at risk of disadvantage from financial strain. These opportunities include support for rural and regional students, students with disabilities and initiatives that facilitate personal and career growth through incorporating international travel and adventure in their studies. The fund also supports students aspiring to a Diploma or Associate Degree from the James Morrison Academy of Music at UniSA.

Ralston Medal for Excellence in Physical Chemistry

John Ralston

One of Australia’s most prominent physical chemists, Emeritus Laureate Professor John Ralston AO FAA FTSE, founded and directed the Ian Wark Research Institute at UniSA for 18 years – the antecedent of the Future Industries Institute.

The Ralston Medal for Excellence in Physical Chemistry has been made possible by the generosity of Professor Ralston’s colleagues, associates and friends in recognition of his significant contribution to research in particle technology, interfacial science and engineering. It acknowledges research excellence and innovation that benefits the minerals and pharmaceutical industries by recognising the most outstanding published journal article in the field of Physical Chemistry.

Medal awarded to outstanding translation of research to industry

Dr Aidan Cousins, recipient of the Norton Jackson MedalDr Aidan Cousins, recipient of the Norton Jackson Medal

The Norton Jackson Material Science and Engineering Medal is a fitting tribute to a man who made a distinguished contribution to the mining industry. A graduate of the university’s antecedent institution - the School of Mines and Industries, the late Norton Jackson was a lifelong supporter and good friend of the University of South Australia.

Each year, the Medal and $5,000 cash prize is awarded to a UniSA Future Industries Institute PhD graduate or graduand who has demonstrated the most potential or real world application of research in industry. Dr Aidan Cousins (pictured), a recent Medal recipient, developed the Ferronova Probe - a revolutionary device to improve the identification of solid cancer metastasis during surgery.

“I was extremely fortunate to receive a scholarship to attend the School of Mines and Industry, an antecedent of the University of South Australia. I later went on to complete a Bachelor of Engineering in Metallurgy and was awarded the prestigious Klug Medal for the ‘top metallurgist of the year’. This award had a powerful influence on my career and is something I would like to replicate for other graduates to aspire to.”
The late Dr Norton Jackson AM

Rewarding School of Business PhD academic excellence

The Graham Arnold Travel Grant and Graham Arnold Prize has been established as part of a significant ten-year gift from Andrew Chen Chew Yen and his wife, Lim Poh Chee. The awards support exceptional School of Business PhD students attain their academic aspirations.

Mr Chen is an alumnus and Fellow of the University of South Australia and has named the awards in honour of former colleague, Associate Professor Graham Arnold - the first Dean International in the International Graduate School of Business in the Division of Business and Enterprise.

Pearce Family Transition Grant and Don Hawke Memorial Scholarship

Elyas AlaviErica and Tom with recipients of the Pearce Family Transition Grant

Tom Pearce, his late wife Jean, and children Susan, Erica and Andrew, are highly valued donors to the University of South Australia. Each year the family provides equitable access for regional and remote students to fulfil their higher education ambitions through the Pearce Family Transition Grants.

In addition, in 2005 Jean created the Don Hawke Memorial Scholarship in honour of her late brother who, through circumstance, was never able to attend university, despite his aspirations. The scholarship provides $25,000 a year for up to five years to cover living and study costs for the study duration.

“We believe in sharing and we get much more joy out of giving than we could have ever imagined.” - The late Jean Pearce

Recent Sheila Bailey Prize winners Malia Gynell and Kellie CroganRecent Sheila Bailey Prize winners Malia Gynell and Kellie Crogan

UniSA staff member giving back

Sheila Bailey and the University of South Australia have a special relationship. Sheila works at the University, her son works at the University, her husband, son, sister and daughter-in-law are all UniSA alumni. She has also become one of our most generous staff donors.

Since 1997, through her role as Advancement Executive (Alumni), Sheila has seen first-hand the huge difference that scholarships, grants and prizes make to students. She has since created three named prizes – the Early Childhood Education Prize, Midwifery Prize and the Physiotherapy Prize.

“It’s rewarding to be able to assist with overcoming some of the hurdles students face in attending university. It is wonderful to be able to help hard-working students achieve their career dreams” 
Sheila Bailey, Advancement Executive (Alumni)
University of South Australia

Support for a rewarding career in Human Resource Management

Scholarship recipient, Naomi RichardsScholarship recipient, Naomi Richards

Belinda Jefferys, a graduate of the School of Management and member of UniSA’s Chancellor’s Club, established the Belinda Jefferys Human Resource Management Scholarship to support students aspiring to a career in HR.

Belinda Jefferys considers her time studying Personnel and Industrial Relations at SAIT (now UniSA) as one that set her on a path to a successful and rewarding career. An inspiration to students aspiring to work in the industry, Ms Jefferys established the named Scholarship to reward a high achieving undergraduate student in their final year as they prepare to transition from study to full time employment.

“I want to share my passion for the profession and the impact it makes on people’s working lives and that’s why I’m supporting young, talented HR professionals of tomorrow through this scholarship.” - Belinda Jefferys

Student Co-op reward for high achievers

Scholarship recipient, Brittany JohnsonThe Co-op Grant recipient, Brittany Johnson

Founded in 1958 by students, The Co-op is now Australia’s largest member owned retailer with over two million members and 130+ stores nationally and online at

The Co-op High Achiever Research Grant is awarded to a full-time Doctorate by Research or Masters by Research student enrolled at UniSA to recognise academic excellence and achievement.

“As a new partner on campus at UniSA we are thrilled to extend our scholarships program to support students in their continuing studies and research.” - Thorsten Wichtendahl, CEO, The Co-op

Facilitating higher education access for Aboriginal Australians

Elyas AlaviGO Foundation CEO Shirley Chowdhary with inaugural Goodes O’Loughlin UniSA GO Scholarship recipient John Boxer

The GO Foundation was founded by Adam Goodes and Michael O’Loughlin to facilitate educational opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people through a strong network of corporate and educational partners. High achieving students pursuing an undergraduate degree in a field of health, human movement or sport and recreation management can apply for the scholarship, which has been supported by the State Government in perpetuity.

Scholarship recipients also have the opportunity to engage with the GO Foundation based in Sydney to receive a range of mentoring, networking and career development opportunities.

“Adam and I both grew up in Adelaide so we are both so pleased that we can offer a GO scholarship at UniSA. South Australia gave us the opportunities that led us to where we are today so it’s great we can give back in some small way.” - Michael O’Loughlin

“The GO Foundation wants to see more and more Indigenous students at universities throughout Australia. We are thrilled to partner with UniSA, one of Australia’s leading universities, to provide opportunities in Adelaide.” - Adam Goodes

Scholarship recipients

Trustees Shauna Henty and Associate Professor Margaret Davy AM with recent scholarship recipients

Irene and David Davy remembered for the advancement of Aboriginal education

Irene Davy, part of the Gunditjmara language group, was born in Dimboola in 1929 and spent most of her life as a nurse’s aide and cook. Irene and her husband David believed that support and encouragement, combined with access to education could change the lives of young people.

With no children of their own, Mr and Mrs Davy took a special interest in helping their nieces Margaret Davy and Judy Moffatt access higher education. With their help Margaret became one of the first working class women to study medicine and Judy became the first Aboriginal person accepted into the nurses training program at Lyell McEwin Hospital.

The Irene and David Davy Scholarship for Advancement of Aboriginal Education opportunities are one of UniSA’s longest running scholarships.

“The scholarship has enabled me to undertake post graduate studies and I have now set a goal to pursue a PhD.” 
Kiah Buckskin-James, 2016 scholarship recipient

Fiona Ward (centre) from the Department for Child Protection with recent recipients Marta Nowak and Katelyn Gilbert

Memorial scholarship honouring a South Australian visionary for child protection

The Ian Cox Memorial Social Work Honours Scholarship was established in memory of the late Ian Cox, who was Director-General of the Department of Community Welfare from 1970 to 1984. He was also an Associate Professor and lecturer in social work at the University of South Australia from 1987 to 2000.

Ian Cox made a considerable contribution to the South Australian community through a reform of the juvenile justice system and support for those experiencing disadvantage. He was also an advocate for families of children with disabilities and parents right to information and input in professional discussions about their children.

Each year the Department for Child Protection supports this $10,000 scholarship plus one years’ HECS fees for the Honours year of a student undertaking a Bachelor of Social Work. More information can be found here.

“Our continued support through the annual Ian Cox scholarship demonstrates our commitment to ensure all South Australian children and young people have the opportunity to thrive.” 
Cathy Taylor, Chief Executive, Department for Child Protection

John Semmler with recent scholarship recipients Lahni Smith and Samantha James

Rotary Club of the Barossa Valley Foundation Scholarship

Rotary is a worldwide organisation that provides humanitarian services through more than 32,000 clubs and 1.2 million members. In 2012 the Rotary Club of the Barossa Valley created a scholarship to help students from the Barossa Valley region afford undergraduate study at UniSA.

“The scholarship is a way for the club to show support and pride in young aspiring members of our community and we look forward to awarding it each year.” 
John Semmler, Trustee of theBarossa Valley Foundation Scholarship

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