Vacation Scholarships

Provide selected students with a supervised introduction to research in mathematics or statistics.

About the program

Our vacation scholarship program provides selected students with a supervised introduction to research in mathematics or statistics. Successful candidates will be supervised by a member of staff according to their general strengths and interests, whether it be pure or applied, maths or statistics.

As well as learning new things for the purpose of research goals, the vacation scholars gain workforce experience and have the chance to meet, socialise and make friends with students of similar interests.

It is particularly recommended for students, either advanced second years, or current third years, who are seriously considering our Masters program.

Students will receive one payment of AUD$2000 (equivalent of $500/week for 4 weeks) after 20 days of research at The University of Melbourne. Detailed information on the scholarship payment will be part of your induction pack.

Info session 2019 (Video, Notes [pdf 6MB])


Vacation Scholarships are available to students who are:

  1. Enrolled in any single or combined degree program in which they have been able to study a significant amount of Mathematics or Statistics
  2. Seriously considering University of Melbourne Mathematics and Statistics postgraduate research programs (eg. MSc, RHD)

Students from other Universities are eligible and encouraged to apply.


Current projects are listed here:

Note: some postings are for a specific project while others are more general and have facets that could run each year, even if the posting is from a previous year. If a research group is not currently proposing any projects, students are encouraged to contact members of that research group and organise new projects.

You may also be interested in selected posters from previous years.

How to apply

Applications for 2019/2020 will open on 6 August 2019 and will close at 5.00 pm on Friday 6 September 2019.

  1. If possible, please attend the Vacation Scholarship Program Information Session.
  2. Complete the online application form and attach the relevant documents. Before you apply we recommend you:
    a) Have spoken to a potential supervisor.
    b) Have your academic transcript ready to upload.
    c) Have your CV ready to upload.
    d) Have written a brief statement detailing why you would like to be part of the Vacation Scholar Program and your career aspirations/future plans saved as a PDF so that you can upload to the application form. Word limit 350 words.

Apply now

We hope to notify applicants via email of the outcome in early October.

Other opportunities

Information session

To find out more about the program and hear from some of our ex-Vacation Scholars, come to our Vacation Scholarship Information Session:

Tuesday 6 August 2019
12.00pm to 1.00pm
Russell Love Theatre, Peter Hall Building (formerly Richard Berry Building) (160)
Parkville Campus, The University of Melbourne

Info session 2019 (Video, Notes [pdf 6MB])


For more information on Vacation Scholarships, please contact: Thomas Quella (Director),

If you have read all of the information and still have further questions, please contact Roy Ridgway (Vacation Scholarship Coordinator),


  • What research projects are available?

    Research projects are at the discretion of supervisors. There are projects listed on the website, however, this list is not exhaustive.
    Supervisors may develop other projects in consultation with scholars. You may wish to contact potential supervisors in Department research areas to discuss potential projects.

  • When do research projects take place?

    Research project takes place from early January to mid February.  Each student spends 4 weeks at the school. Dates are agreed with the supervisor.

  • Can students apply for the program without a potential supervisor?

    Yes, though communicating with potential supervisors before applying is advisable.

    Indeed, we actively encourage applicants to initiate contact with potential supervisors as this is an important part of the process of going into Masters and PhD programs

  • Can second-year students apply?

    Advanced second year students are encouraged to apply. The program is primarily aimed at third year students, as students in second year may not yet have strong enough foundations to undertake a research project.

  • Can the program be undertaken on a part-time basis?

    Unfortunately, there is no part-time option for the program.

  • Is the Department of Mathematics and Statistics Vacation Scholarship Program the same as the AMSI Vacation Research Scholarships?

    AMSI offers vacation research scholarships to eligible students at AMSI member universities to work closely with a supervisor at their home university. AMSI scholars become part of the Department Vacation Scholarship Program.

    The AMSI Vacation Research Scholarships:

    • are six weeks in total (MS Dept. scholarships are four);
    • have different eligibility requirements;
    • have a different application process - visit the website for further information
    • require students to write up their research and present it to their peers and supervisors at the end of the summer
    • offer travel and accommodation to attend CSIRO’s Big Day.
  • Are the projects listed on the Melbourne University's Vacation Scholarship website available as projects for AMSI?

    The projects listed on the webpage can be submitted to the AMSI program if the supervisor approves. You should contact the supervisor and discuss.

  • Are we expected to create our own project or are there potential projects waiting?

    There is a list of potential projects on this website; however, you can discuss topics of interest with potential supervisors.

  • Should I contact a potential supervisor myself or go through the University's representative first?

    You should contact the potential supervisor directly. We actively encourage applicants to initiate contact with potential supervisors as this is an important part of the process of going into Masters and PhD programs.

  • Can non-University of Melbourne students apply?

    Students from other Australian or New Zealand Universities are most welcome and strongly encouraged to apply.

    Successful applicants will need to organise their own accommodation and travel.

    Two travel scholarships will be available each year, up to a total of $1800 per scholar. Students must apply for the travel scholarship at the time of applying for the vacation scholarship. To be eligible, students must live:

    • interstate
    • in New Zealand
    • in Victoria, but more than 2 hours' commute from the University.

    Only very strong interstate students (e.g. top 10 ranking using the Vacation Scholarship metric) will be considered. Students awarded travel scholarships can use the money for flights and basic accommodation, but will need to justify their expenses.

    Other than the above-mentioned travel scholarships, The University of Melbourne will not cover accommodation or travel expenses. The costs of accommodation and travel are the responsibility of the Vacation Scholar.

Contact us

For more information on Vacation Scholarships (including updates about the application process), please contact Roy Ridgway (

For academic inquiries, please contact the program coordinators Thomas Quella (