FAQS for interns
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander applicants
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander applicants are highly encouraged to apply. All applications will be reviewed and considered for placement. To be eligible to undertake a funded internship, the candidate must:
- Be Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander.
- Provide confirmation of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander descent. This is a signed statement including common seal from the Aboriginal Heritage Association, Aboriginal Corporation or Land Council.
- At the time of application, the candidate is not in receipt of funding through the Indigenous Cadetship Support initiative. (Note: Indigenous applicants currently receiving ICS funding can apply for a non-funded internship).
- Enrolled for study at a university or vocational institute (minimum Certificate IV) or have graduated from a degree at an Australian university.
- Have capacity to complete a four to six week full-time internship or part-time equivalent.
- Have allowed six months to have passed before undertaking a second Commonwealth funded internship.
Establishing Aboriginal and or Torres Strait Islander status
To be eligible for this Scholarship it is necessary to confirm an individual’s status as an Aboriginal and or Torres Strait Islander. Details relating to acceptable evidence is outlined below.
A person may confirm Aboriginal and or Torres Strait Islander identity through:
- a letter stamped with the common seal and signed by the chairperson of an Aboriginal and or Torres Strait Islander Land Council; or
- a letter stamped with the common seal and signed by a delegate of an incorporated Aboriginal and or Torres Strait Islander organisation, such as the Aboriginal Medical Service or an Aboriginal Legal Service.
To be eligible to undertake an internship, the candidate must:
- Be enrolled for study at a university or have graduated from a degree at an Australian university
- Undertake an internship with an Indigenous sector organisation
- Self-fund living expenses, accommodation and travel costs
- Demonstrate an appropriate level of cultural competency
When can I apply?
3 weeks in March and August each year. Opening and closing round dates will be announced on the website. We are still accepting applications for the Winter 2022 round from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders applicants. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance.
Applications for the Summer 2022/23 round will open in August 2022. Please register your interest to be notified when applications open.
How do I apply?
Prepare the required information as separate PDF documents to be uploaded throughout the application:
i) A confirmation of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander descent (Indigenous applicants only)
ii) An up-to-date academic transcript/s (official or unofficial) listing all university and/ or vocational results
iii) A curriculum vitae
iv) Up to two references, an academic/ professional reference, and a personal/ community reference. You will need to include at least 1 reference letter in your application (ideally from the professional or academic referee). Phone references will not be accepted.
The reference letter/s should address:
- Referee’s relationship with the candidate
- Referee’s academic/ professional position and/ or personal/community connection in relation to the candidate
- Capabilities, personal qualities and characteristics of the candidate
- Timeliness of this opportunity in the candidate’s academic and career development
Prepare for written sections of the online form. Consider your motivation for applying, relevant experience and/or strengths, and cultural competency (non-Indigenous applicants only). Also, review our Host organisations and determine your top 5 preferences.
i) Register for an account on the Indigenous Pathways Portal. This will enable to ‘save and continue’ function.
i) Complete the online application form (available when applications open)
ii) Attach the application materials as PDF documents throughout the online form
iii) You can ‘Save and Continue’ the application form. You will be notified on the website if your application has been saved and sent an email with a link to continue your application at a later date
iv) When you have completed the online form and attached your application materials please click on the submit button.
v) A confirmation notification will appear if you have submitted your application correctly
vi) If you are unsure if your application has been submitted, please contact the Internships team for assistance
The Internships team can provide guidance on the application process where needed. Contact us Internships@aurorafoundation.com.au
How does the selection process work?
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander applicants:
- Online applications are reviewed by the Internships team
- Online (face-to-face) interviews take place in April and September
- If none of our current Hosts align with your academic background and/or career aspirations, we encourage you to identify a suitable Host. Please contact the Internships team for further information
- Applicants are required to complete an Eligibility form to determine whether they are eligible to receive Commonwealth funding
- Best effort will be made to place all eligible Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander applicants
- As we only have a limited number of opportunities available for non-Indigenous participants, this is a competitive selection process
- We will only accept 150 applications per round
- Online applications are reviewed by the Internships team
- Applicants are short-listed for interview
- Online interviews take place in April and September
- Following interviews, successful applicants are short-listed as eligible to be proposed for an internship
Please note: We rely on the demand from the host organisations so the number of available internships varies for each round. For this reason, it may not be possible to place all applicants that have made it through to this stage of the selection process.
Where can I go?
Over 200 Aurora host organisations are based in major cities, as well as regional and remote locations across Australia.
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander interns can undertake an internship at a host organisation outside of the Indigenous sector so long as the internship is relevant to candidate’s study and career aspirations.
When and how long is an internship?
Internships run for a minimum of four weeks to a maximum of six weeks full-time or a part-time equivalent. Candidates usually complete internships over university or vocational breaks. There is flexibility for internships to be completed outside of this timeframe with support.
Winter placements run from June through August, with flexibility through to October. Summer placements run from November through to the third week of December; and January through March, with flexibility through May.
How may Covid and lockdown restrictions impact my internship?
Covid and lockdown restriction have the capacity to impact an organisation’s capacity to host interns onsite. Therefore, candidates may be required to complete all or part of their internship under working from home conditions. Aurora highly encourages candidates to consider undertaking an internship in their primary state of residence to avoid any potential travel restrictions that may prohibit their return home.
What are the benefits of undertaking an internship?
- Practical hands-on experience
- An opportunity to trial the career or sector you would like to work in
- An opportunity to consider a career change
- Create or expand professional networks
- Develop valuable skills and expand knowledge base
- Potential for transition into a job
- Become part of the Aurora alumni network
What sort of work can I expect to undertake?
The role or tasks an intern undertakes is negotiated in partnership with the host organisation. It is important the intern and host organisation set clear parameters and have a shared understanding of the desired outcomes of the internship. Tasks and duties may include:
- Assisting and contributing to the team
- Job shadowing someone as they perform their daily duties
- Developing research briefs
- Conducting desktop or field research
- Supporting stakeholder or client engagement
- Assisting with program or event delivery
- Leading small to medium sized projects
- Data entry or digitising records
- Development of policy and procedures
- Providing administrative support
What is expected of interns?
Every internship is unique. Interns who approach their host organisation and internship with a deep interest and a keenness to listen and learn are best placed to gain the most from the experience.
Interns commit to fulfilling a number of obligations before, during and after their internship, which include:
- Completing the Internship contract complying with all provisions set out in the contract
- Complying with the Intern code of conduct as set out in the Internship contract and Intern Handbook
- Complete their internship in the confirmed timeframe
- Complete the end-of-week one and mid-internship survey
- Complete the end-of-internship feedback survey
- Support the promotion of the Program and their host organisation
- All Aurora interns will receive a Certificate of Completion once all of the obligations have been fulfilled
What will it cost?
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander interns
- Scholarships offer up to $800 per week which cover living expenses and up to $2,800 (incl GST) for travel and accommodation costs for away-from-home internships
- Internships are self-funded
- If your preference is to be placed away from home, you will be expected to organise your own accommodation and transport
Can I count my legal internship towards my PLT?
Some hosts will be able to accommodate this request. Please include this preference on your online application form.
Can I get course credit?
Some universities and vocational institute will offer course credit for undertaking an Aurora internship. You should consult with your relevant course coordinator for further information. Some host organisations will be able to accommodate this request.
FAQs for hosts
We partner with a broad range of host organisations across the Indigenous sector. We are also open to working with host organisations who work outside the sector who are keen to host Indigenous interns.
Interested in becoming an Aurora host organisation? Please contact us for more details at Internships@aurorafoundation.com.au.
Non-Indigenous sector organisations will be required to contribute towards support of Indigenous interns. The fee structure will be discussed with organisations on enquiry.
What to expect when hosting an Aurora intern
- Access to Aurora’s network of enthusiastic and motivated interns who are potential pools for future recruitment
- Capacity and capability support from both Indigenous and non-Indigenous interns
- High calibre interns who have progressed through Aurora’s stringent selection process
- Interns prepared to assist and support wherever needed
- Interns to undertake a 4-to-6-week, full time commitment (unless other arrangements have been made)
- Can be located anywhere in Australia
- To complete an online Host intern requirement form each round
- Interns to report regularly to the Aurora Internships team on their experience
- Ongoing involvement and support from the Internships team in the management of each internship
Some Hosts require their interns to undertake a part or full-time internship from home due to COVID restrictions. To support our Hosts with home-based internships, please view our
Commitment and obligations
What does Aurora expect from host organisations?
Host organisations are expected to provide a safe and supportive environment that will support interns to achieve their learning goals and contribute to team outcomes. Additional expectations include:
- We require each host organisation to complete a self-assessment to ensure an appropriate environment for interns
- Provide interns with tasks related to their academic background and/or aspirations
- Develop a work plan and complete a Host Internship Plan for each confirmed intern
- Provide adequate supervision and support for interns including regular constructive feedback including a weekly check-in session between intern and supervisor to review the internship plan
- Complete a brief online feedback questionnaire at the completion of each internship
- Complete the Terms and Conditions for Aurora host organisations and refer to the Host Internship Plan