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Scholarships Search JCU Access Fund

JCU Access Fund

The JCU Access Fund could be the answer if money problems stand between you and a higher education at James Cook University (JCU). Your financial circumstances are taken into consideration when awarding these scholarships and bursaries.

The JCU Access Fund consists of three awards as below, you only need to submit one application which will be assessed for all awards you may be eligible for.

Fund Student typeValueDuration
JCU Access Scholarship Undergraduate, first year, full time $5,000 1 year
JCU Access Bursary Undergraduate, first year, full time $2,000 1 year
JCU Support Grant Undergraduate, second year only, full time $1,000 1 year
Applications Open Round 1 1 May 2024
Applications Close Round 1 29 May 2024 5PM
Applications Open Round 2 30 September 2024
Applications Close Round  2 30 October 2024 5PM

If all the below statements describe you and your current situation, you can apply for the JCU Access Fund:

  • I am an Australian citizen, New Zealand citizen or Permanent or Humanitarian Visa holder;
  • I am not an international students;
  • I am in need of financial support, (i.e. receiving Centrelink payments or low earnings threshold)
  • I am a new commencing student enrolled as a first year student in an undergraduate diploma or bachelor course;
    • First year students commencing at JCU, are only eligible for the Access Scholarship or Bursary
    • a commencing student has no previous study load at JCU within the last 5 years.
  • I am enrolled as a second year student in an undergraduate bachelor course;
    • Second year students are only eligible for the Support Grant
  • I have not previously completed a bachelor degree.
  • I am or will be enrolled full-time, i.e. in a minimum of 9 credit points per semester (any study mode)
  • If I am applying in my second semester (as a first year), or as a second year, then my course GPA must be 4.0 or higher.

Years of study is not determined by your course; it is determined by your actual time studied at JCU regardless of which course you are enrolled in.

JCU Access Fund is not open to International Students.

You can only receive an Access Fund Scholarship or Bursary once as a first year student and the Access Fund Grant once as a second year student.

Just follow these 5 easy steps to put in an application:

Step 1Check that you are eligible to apply
Step 2Read the conditions and the Rules of the Scholarship below and make sure you understand what they mean
Step 3

Click on the Apply Now button above

Step 4

Answer the questions, and if indicated to do so, upload supporting documentation to verify your circumstances. See Examples of Supporting documentation to help you with what documents may be needed.
You can also access Centrelink Self Service  for your centrelink evidence.

Your application will not be assessed until you upload the required documents. If you have any difficult uploading the documents you can email them direct to

Please make sure you include your full name and Student ID on all correspondence.

Step 5Submit your application.

The Scholarships Office will assess your application and contact you to either confirm your application is complete/verified, or if not, they may request further information from you.

If you have any difficulty or need further assistance then please contact the Scholarships Office.

If you are a successful recipient in round 1 and you remain eligible after census date, you will receive payment to your nominated bank account as below:

If you are a successful recipient in round 2 and you remain eligible after census date, you will receive payment to your nominated bank account as below:

JCU Access Scholarship and JCU Access Bursary
Approximately 6 weeks after awarding.

JCU Support Grant
Approximately 6 weeks after awarding.

All payments are made by direct deposit to your bank account.

Your application is checked for completeness and eligibility, and you will receive an email confirmation after it has been received. After the closing date it will be individually assessed and put forward to a selection committee who will rank your application against others who have applied.

Being eligible does not guarantee a scholarship

If you meet the scholarship eligibility criteria it doesn’t guarantee that you’ll be awarded a scholarship.There are a limited number of Scholarships and there are often more applicants than scholarships.

Applicants are ranked against eligibility criteria and then scholarships are awarded to applicants who best meet that eligibility criteria. If you’re unsuccessful it doesn’t mean that you’re not in need; rather, it means that there are other applicants who’ve been assessed as being in greater need.  You may still be eligible to re-apply in the future.

That apply to:

  • JCU Access Scholarships
  • JCU Access Bursaries
  • JCU Support Grants


For the purpose of this document the JCU Access Scholarships, JCU Access Bursaries and JCU Support Grants will be collectively referred to as the JCU Access Fund.  A payment under this program will be referred to as an award.
The JCU Access Fund has been established to assist JCU first and second year undergraduate students from low socio-economic backgrounds with study related costs.

The JCU Access Fund is funded from a number of sources, including JCU, the Commonwealth Government’s Higher Education Participation and Partnerships Program, and by donations from members of the community.

This scholarship is subject to the provisions of the James Cook University Coursework Scholarships, Bursaries and Grants Policy.

Nature of the JCU Access Fund

The JCU Access Scholarship

  • is valued at $5,000 or such amount as the Selection Committee may determine from time to time;

The JCU Access Bursary

  • is valued at $2,000 or such amount as the Selection Committee may determine from time to time;

The JCU Support Grant

  • is valued at a $1,000 or such amount as the Selection Committee may determine from time to time;

Eligibility Criteria

To be eligible for an award under the JCU Access Fund, an applicant must:

  • for JCU Access Scholarships and JCU Access Bursaries be a JCU student in their first year of enrolment1 in an undergraduate bachelor or diploma course as at the census date for Study Period 1 and 2; or
  • If applying in the second semester (as a first year), or as a second year, then course GPA must be 4.0 or higher.
  • for JCU Support Grants be a JCU student in their second year of enrolment2 in an undergraduate bachelor or diploma course, as at the census date for Study Period 1 and 21; and
  • be an Australian citizen, a New Zealand citizen or a holder of a permanent (or humanitarian) visa; and
  • be enrolled by the census date as a full-time student (at least 9 credit points per semester) in Study Period 1 or 2 or be enrolled by the relevant census date as a part-time student due to exceptional circumstances that prevent the applicant from enrolling as a full-time student; and
  • have not previously completed a bachelor degree.
  • be experiencing on-going financial hardship demonstrated by sufficient documentary evidence to enable a comprehensive assessment by the Selection Committee. Evidence may be in the form of an applicant being eligible for or receiving Centrelink benefits or be dependent on a person who is receiving Centrelink benefits.
  • be able to demonstrate that they have experienced ongoing hardship or additional challenges which may hinder their access to, or participation in, tertiary education.

1 Have or will complete Semester 1 or currently in Semester 2 for the first time at JCU and no previous study load in the last 5 years
at JCU.
2 Have completed 2 Semesters and are currently in their 3rd or 4th Semester (2nd year)

Application Procedures

Applications must be submitted no later than the advertised closing date of the relevant Round.

Applicants must attach to the official form, where appropriate:

  • a copy of all supporting documentation, as indicated on the application form; and
  • any other supporting documentation that would assist the Selection Committee in assessing the merit of the application.

Applications submitted without the relevant documentation will not be considered.

The applicant authorises the Selection Committee to make such enquiries as to the applicant’s suitability to receive the award, which includes authorisation for the Selection Committee to examine the applicant’s academic record.

Selection Process

The selection criteria and ranking methodology shall be determined each year by the Selection Committee, which shall comprise:

  • Dean, Centre for Education and Enhancement (Chair), or nominee,
  • AccessAbility Support, or nominee,
  • Manager, Student Finance and Scholarships, or nominee.
  • **OR a pool of appropriate JCU representatives

At any meeting of the Committee three members shall form a quorum.

The Committee or its Chairperson may invite other University staff members and persons external to the University, as required for the purposes of the Committee, to attend meetings as advisors.

In establishing the selection criteria and ranking methodology, the Selection Committee will afford consideration to the following criteria:

  • extent of hardship experienced by applicant;
  • applicant’s status in relation to under-represented groups in higher education;
  • other criteria that the Selection Committee deems appropriate.

The Committee shall nominate a suitably qualified person as the Evaluation Officer to undertake the ranking of applications in accordance with the agreed methodology.

An applicant will not be selected for an award under the JCU Access Fund unless the University is satisfied that the applicant meets the eligibility criteria.

When assessing exceptional circumstances relating to part-time study, the decision that an applicant cannot study full-time due to exceptional circumstances will be made by the Evaluation Officer; and for the purposes of ongoing eligibility by the Manager, Student Finance & Scholarships. Factors such as disability, significant carer responsibilities, the unique circumstances of Indigenous students and course constraints outside a student’s control will be taken into account in determining ability to study full-time.

Where the number of eligible applications exceeds the awards available, applications will be ranked using the methodology determined by the Selection Committee, and awards will be allocated in order of rank.

Where applications are ranked equally on the basis of personal and financial circumstances, academic merit will be used as the final determinant.

The Selection Committee, in accordance with agreed ranking methodology, will determine and ratify the recipients of awards of the JCU Access Fund.

Conditions of the JCU Access Fund

Payment will not be made for an award if the recipient does not confirm acceptance within 7 days of being awarded.

An award may be terminated by the Manager, Student Finance and Scholarships if the recipient:

  • ceases to meet the eligibility criteria; or
  • is suspended or excluded from their course of study in which they were offered a award under the provisions of the Academic Progression Policy; or
  • has been subject to more than one penalty for academic misconduct under the University’s Student Academic Misconduct Requirements;
  • has been found guilty of inappropriate conduct under the Student Conduct Policy and this inappropriate conduct is deemed serious by the Student Discipline Committee;
  • is found to have provided false or misleading information in relation to the award.

Administration of the Award

The Fund shall be administered by the Scholarships Office, Student Services, on behalf of the Selection Committee.

The funds shall be held in an account in the name of the University and shall be administered by the officer of the University charged with administering the program.

Appeal Process

A student may request a review of any decision made pursuant to this policy by lodging the request in writing with the Manager, Student Finance & Examinations, within 14 days of the date of notification.

If not satisfied with the outcome of the review a student may then lodge an appeal under the JCU Student Review and Appeals Policy.

1 The census dates for Study Period 1 and Study Period 2
2 The year of enrolment relates to the period of time that the student has been enrolled, regardless of the year level of subjects within the course.