Indigenous Students in Science

If you’re an Indigenous student thinking about a career in science, read on to learn about what we can offer you at the University of Melbourne.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students come from all over Australia to study with us, and several hundred Indigenous students are part of our friendly community on campus.

We provide an inclusive and supportive environment for you to pursue your aspirations.

Residential Indigenous Science Experience (RISE)

RISE is a free week-long camp for Indigenous Year 9 and 10 students who are excited about science, technology, engineering, and maths. We welcome applications from students from anywhere in Australia.
More about RISE

Bachelor of Science

A Bachelor of Science is the first step towards a dream career in science, health, engineering or technology. We also offer the Bachelor of Science (Extended) – a 4-year course especially for talented Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians who may not meet the regular Bachelor of Science entry requirements. You’ll have access to the full range of subject choices and opportunities within the Bachelor of Science, plus Indigenous studies subjects and built-in support.

Meet a science student

Kinji May Munkara-Murray

Tiwi and Rembarrnga woman Kinjia May Munkarra-Murray was hesitant to go into the Bachelor of Science as she felt that there was a still a stigma around being an Indigenous person and a woman in STEM. However, the hesitation didn’t last long.

"I’d always loved science, and once I changed over to the BSc, I just thrived. I well and truly blossomed into the academic, science world,” she says.

Earlier this year Kinjia was awarded the Agilent Indigenous Leadership Award. The award recognises demonstrated leadership in STEM focussed initiatives by Indigenous students.

“This award prompted a lot of self-reflection for me,” Kinjia says. “It made me realise how much I had achieved over the last few years. Being selected for it validated those feelings, it made me realise that yes I have been contributing to the community and it’s a public acknowledgement of those contributions.”

Meet Brittney Andrews: a Noongar woman from WA.

Scholarships for Indigenous science students

Visit the Scholarships website, to view and search all scholarship options.

Scholarship name Applications open Applications close Total value Number awarded
Agilent Indigenous STEM Leadership Awards 9 Nov 2020 27 Mar 2021 up to $2,000 ~ 5
The Deidrea Miller Prize for Indigenous Women 9 Nov 2020 7 Mar 2021 up to $2,500 ~ 1
Agilent PhD Scholarship in Science Automatic consideration 1
Indigenous PhD Scholarship in Science Automatic consideration 1

Access Melbourne special entry scheme

We have a special entry scheme designed especially for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians. Access Melbourne can help you gain entry into courses such as the Bachelor of Science, even if your ATAR is below the minimum. More about Access Melbourne

We have a similar scheme for graduate courses. More about Graduate Access Melbourne

Support from Murrup Barak

The team at Murrup Barak, the Melbourne Institute for Indigenous Development, can help you with any questions you have about applying for the University of Melbourne.

Once you’re here, the Murrup Barak Student Success Team can help you settle into life at uni with dedicated facilities, events, advice and more.  
Get in touch with Murrup Barak

Our commitment to reconciliation

The University of Melbourne prioritises purposeful and respectful engagement with Indigenous communities. Our formal commitments to reconciliation are outlined in our third Reconciliation Action Plan 2018- 2022 [PDF].

The Faculty of Science also has an Indigenous Strategic Plan, which guides our efforts to lead Indigenous engagement and reconciliation through a shared endeavour to expand human knowledge in all aspects of the sciences.

Agilent Technologies: supporting future Indigenous leaders

The science and healthcare company Agilent Technologies has been pivotal in supporting many of the opportunities we offer Indigenous students.

Philip Binns from Agilent Technologies said his company felt honoured to partner with the University of Melbourne to increase the pool of talented young Indigenous Australians capable of becoming future leaders in science, technology, engineering and maths.

“As a global scientific leader with a significant Australian based R&D capability, we look forward to providing both funding and the opportunity for career mentoring and experience to STEM graduates.”