Charlie Perkins Scholarship

Ten years ago, there had never been an Indigenous Australian studying full-time at Oxford or Cambridge. Since then, 27 Charlie Perkins Scholars have been accepted into full-time studies at these universities. To date, 17 have graduated. You can read more about each Scholar’s journey here.

The value of each Perkins Scholarship will vary, depending on the scholarship holder’s course of study. It will cover up to three years full university and college fees, travel costs, and an annual stipend to cover living expenses.

These Postgraduate scholarships are particularly directed towards Indigenous Australians who have the potential to become leaders in their field of study and in their communities

Scholarship details

Value: Value may vary

Duration: 3 Years

Availability: 1 scholarship offered

Application dates


Open: 01/10/2023
Close: 31/01/2024


This scholarship is for:

Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander applicants
Academic merit

Areas of study:

  • Any Area of Study

At Institution:

  • Other

Study level:

  • Postgraduate coursework
  • Postdoctoral
  • Postgraduate research

Study Load:

  • Full Time


  • Overseas

Eligibility Criteria

You must apply directly to the university prior to applying for this Scholarship. Each course and university has its own deadlines which you must be aware of (please refer to the Charlie Perkins Trust website). Please ensure you read all the information below and contact the Scholarships Manager if you have any questions about the application process. 

Applicants must: 

  • Have tertiary qualifications; 
  • Be accepted into any graduate degree program offered at the University of Oxford or the University of Cambridge (this will usually require a First Class Honours degree, upper Second Class Honours degree or equivalent) or have an application under consideration at Oxford or Cambridge Admissions Office; 
  • Be of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander descent and identify as Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander, and be accepted as such by the community in which you live/have lived;
  • Provide a written statement confirming their Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander heritage. Applicants must also provide a signed document (including common seal) as confirmation from the Aboriginal Heritage Association, Aboriginal Corporation or Land Council. 

How to Apply

Please complete an online application form. You will need the following documents:

Your personal statement should address the following:

Why you want to study your chosen course, how you identify with the Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander community in which you live/have lived and past contributions you have made within your community and ways in which understanding your chosen course will benefit the Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander community (and wider community) following the completion of your course.

A current curriculum vitae (CV);

Academic transcripts: official transcripts of your university results (including mid-year if possible);

Offer letter – offer letter or proof of application to selected institution. This will need to be sent directly to;

Confirmation of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Descent: through a signed statement, including a common seal. 


A high resolution headshot;

Four references: 2 Academic and/or Professional, 1 Personal and 1 Community – for more explanation on this please see the “further information” tab.

Further Information

A Confirmation of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Descent statement is typically administered by an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander Heritage Association, Corporation or Land Council.

Aurora understands that the process to obtain a Confirmation of Aboriginality with a common seal is complex, but it is required for your application. Any without will be marked incomplete and will not be assessed.  


Differing reference types for applications:

Academic: academic staff such as Lecturers. Tutors and Course Coordinators. Professional staff members such as Student Success Officers will not be accepted.

Personal: someone who you hold a long-standing relationship with and can speak to your character and aspirations.

Professional: someone who was/is your reporting manager.

Community: a recognised Leader of an Elder in your community.