Pacific professional development scholarships

Warm Pacific greetings! The 2022 round of our Pacific Professional Development Scholarships is now closed. Visit this page for the final announcement of successful recipients on Friday, November 25.

About the scholarships

Ako Aotearoa is committed to supporting Pacific staff and emerging Pacific leaders in tertiary education. Our purpose is two-fold and aims to address the following priorities:

  • Supporting Pacific tertiary staff on their pathways to leadership positions through career development.
  • Building leadership capability, along with capacity, that becomes a stronger platform of support to grow greater Pacific learner success.

The scholarships are each worth between $2,000 and $5,000. The nominees' organisation is expected to provide a cash or "in kind" contribution to match that being funded by Ako Aotearoa.


The fund is open to all Pacific staff working in tertiary education in New Zealand. The fund is designed to support the career development of Pacific staff who have demonstrated the potential to progress to middle and senior management positions within New Zealand's tertiary sector.

The scholarships are open to all staff (both academic and general/professional) who are:

  • of Pacific descent
  • working to support learners in tertiary education
  • can demonstrate how the professional development aligns with their existing role and contributes to their career development.

Staff must be nominated by their employers. Nominees may work in any part of the tertiary education sector.

The role of the organisation

The fund aims to build the capability of Pacific teachers, learners and support staff by funding appropriate, targeted Professional Development activities not considered "business as usual" for the applicants or their organisations.

Ako Aotearoa looks to award scholarships to individuals where their employing TEO can demonstrate its commitment to the advancement and capability of its Pacific staff, preferably organisation-wide and at a strategic level.