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Bush Bursaries and Country Women's Association Scholarships

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What are the scholarships?

NSW Rural Doctors Network (RDN) Bush Bursaries and Country Women's Association (CWA) Scholarships provide selected medical, midwifery and nursing students in NSW/ACT with $1,500 each to assist with costs associated with their studies. Recipients also spend two weeks on a rural placement in country NSW during their university holidays. The placement combines the enjoyable aspects of country life and rural medicine.

The Bush Bursaries are funded by individual NSW rural councils and scholarships are funded by the Country Women's Association of NSW. They are administered by RDN.

Placements are coordinated by the rural councils. Placement locations may differ each year due to the involvement of different councils. 

The two-week placements are usually undertaken in December or January but can be at different times of the year.

Applicants must demonstrate:

  • an interest in rural practice and lifestyle;
  • an understanding of the realities of rural medical practice; and
  • the motivation to undertake a placement in a rural area as part of the scheme.

Students not honouring their commitment to undertake a rural placement are required to pay back all money granted to them.

NOTE: Travel and accommodation costs incurred by undertaking placements must be covered by the scholarship payment.

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Who is eligible?

Rural and urban students are eligible to apply for the bursaries and scholarships.

  • Applicants must be enrolled in a NSW or ACT university in a:
    • first or second-year medical degree; or
    • any year nursing degree; or
    • any year midwifery degree. 
  • Applicants must be Australian or New Zealand citizens or permanent residents of Australia.
  • Applicants must have completed all university study requirements at the time of application and demonstrate this by provision of proof of enrolment.

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How to apply

Applications for the 2022 Scholarships are now open and will close at 5pm Monday 11 July. 

Subscribe below to receive updates on this scholarship or follow us on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter.  

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What previous Bush Bursaries and Country Women's Association Scholarships recipients have said about their placements:Giselle_Bush_Bursary_CWA_Scholarship


“Whether it was sitting in on consultations, asking questions or even assisting with treatment, the patients were happy for me to be included and all of the learning opportunities I had were hands-on. 

“My rural experience has confirmed my desire to work rurally in the future and to do all I can to support rural patients."

Giselle Capacchione 



“The most monumental thing I learnt while on the Bush Bursary placement in Bega was the impact of healthcare accessibility on small communities. Each day I met patients who had travelled up to two hours just to get to Bega’s South East Regional Hospital (SERH). 

“This highlighted to me the importance of making rural medicine more accessible for the health and wellbeing of patients and their families. 

“Outside of the placement I explored the area, went bush walking, whale watching and sightseeing. The community of Bega was friendly, warm and welcoming. I feel like I now have a home away from home in Bega.” 


Maddy Hawthorne | Read Maddy's story




Nicola Marshall and Tim Macmillan

"If anything the appeal of rural medicine has just strengthened - I've definitely seen a lot of the challenges that it brings, but it also seems so rewarding and the kind of relationships I saw between doctors/nurses and patients is what I want from my career."

Nicola Marshall 



Find out more

Email students@nswrdn.com.au for more information. 

Subscribe here to receive scholarship information, RDN updates and information about opportunities to experience rural health. 


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