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Schools Newsletter  |  May 2020

Kia ora Mike,

Applications are now open
for a place on our 3-4 year scholarship programme, providing wrap around support for academically talented young people who will face significant financial hardship in pursuing and successfully graduating from their tertiary studies.


Ngā mihi,
Kirk Sargent

Chief Executive Officer
Each year we aim to offer approximately 50 places on our 3-4 year scholarship programme, funded by our scholarship partners. Our scholarship partners are businesses, trusts and personal funders who believe in our transformational programme (3-pillar model) and want to give a "hand up and not just a hand out" to deserving young people who want to make difference in their whānau and community.

This year, the economic impact of Covid-19 has meant a number of our loyal, longstanding partners are deferring financial decisions. We currently have 25 places available on our programme.

Each of our scholarship partners have their own criteria (on top of our general criteria we have set - see below). If you have been successful after the First Foundation interview stage (stage 2) your application may be referred to scholarship partners to decide if you are shortlisted to interview for their scholarship/s. 

1.  Complete Application Form (Open: 29th April / Close: 19th July)
  • Eligibility Form 
  • Application Form 
  • Upload your supporting documents
2.  Interview stage with First Foundation (May - Sept)
  • Shortlisted for an interview with First Foundation (May - Aug)
  • Conduct First Foundation Interviews (May - Sept)
  • Tentatively match applicants to potential scholarship partners (based on their specific criteria)
3.  Interview stage with Scholarship Partner/s (Sept - Nov)
  • Shortlist for an interview with your potential scholarship partner (Sept - Nov)
  • Conduct interviews with your potential scholarship partner
  • Scholarship partner to shortlist their top candidates
4. Scholarship Offer and Award (Nov - Mar)
  • Conditional offer to top candidate/s (Nov - Dec)
  • Induction to First Foundation programme for students only (Dec - Jan)
  • Orientation and Induction for students and whanau to meet their mentors (Jan - Feb)
  • Awards Ceremony (Feb - Mar)

Please note, time frames may be subject to change.
  • 3-4 year scholarship programme (valued at $10,000) managed by First Foundation to provide talented young New Zealanders opportunities and resources to help them successfully navigate from school, through university and into a meaningful career. Our life-changing 3-4 year programme creates a ripple effect in your community that will last forever

    - A personal mentor for 3-4 years (Year 13/1st Year University to 3rd Year University)

    - Paid work experience (4-5 weeks per year)*

    - Access to wrap around support from First Foundation’s Student Support Team

    - Access to Student Success Workshops and Events***
  • $12,000 towards tertiary fees/costs** at degree level ($4,000 per year for the first three years of university)
* Only for scholarships who offer work experience. Trusts and personal funders do not provide work experience. However, First Foundation will advertise any work experience opportunities to scholars who do not have access to work experience. For those who are applying for (and employed by their) corporate scholarship partner (ie. Briscoes Group) will not gain new positions or work experience opportunities.

**The scholarship provider determines how the scholarship funds can be used. The scholarship funds are primarily for tertiary fees. However, some scholarship partners do allow scholarship funds to be allocated for some university costs such as, textbooks, coursework resources, transport, accommodation and IT resources. Please note, this is not guaranteed for all scholarships.

***All efforts will be made to successfully match scholars to a personal mentor in their recruitment region by the Orientation and Induction in Jan - Feb. There may be delays if scholars are recruited outside of our main regions (Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch) OR if a scholar moves away from their recruitment region.

****Workshops will primarily be delivered online, larger events will be delivered in our main regions (Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch).
*Standard scholarship applicants must meet ALL of the following criteria:
  • Must meet the household income threshold 
    - Income cap $75,000 1-2 dependants**
    - Income cap $90,000 for 3 or more dependants**

  • Must currently be enrolled at Year 12 or 13* level at a New Zealand secondary school
  • Must have an overall Merit or Excellence endorsement in Level 1 (or Level 2 for Y13)
  • Must be a New Zealand Citizen, NZ Resident, or Refugee Status
*There are limited (10%) scholarships available for Year 13 students

**dependants are your parents/caregivers children who are financially dependent on their income to cover primary living costs (accommodation, food, educational costs etc.)
*Preference is given to students who meet all or most of our preference list:
  • First in your immediate family to attend university (75%)
  • Currently enrolled at Year 12
  • Gained an overall NCEA Excellence endorsement
  • Passed all NCEA external assessments
  • Leadership and community involvement
  • Willingness to be a part of a mentor relationship
  • Proven positive and committed work ethic
  • Ability to manage multiple responsibilities whilst maintaining high academic grades
*Please note that preferences and criteria are different. The criteria outline the compulsory requirements to be eligible for our scholarship programme. Our preferences are not compulsory requirements. They may give you a better advantage of being successfully selected for our scholarship programme. 
Scholarship subject/career pathway *criteria:
  • Accounting, Business, Commerce and Economics
  • Computer Science
  • Engineering
  • Information Technology
  • Law
  • Science
Please note, there are general scholarships available (where there is no specific career/subject pathway required) if you are not choosing any of the career pathways listed above.
*Each scholarship partner has their own subject/career pathway criteria. The list above are the most common disciplines our scholarship partners are looking for. Please note, there are general scholarships (no specific subject criteria) available.

Monday 18 May 3:30pm via zoom.


Every Thursday in May, 2:30-3:00pm.

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