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Scholarships and Prizes Policy

Abstract

The Scholarships and Prizes Policy outlines the process by which scholarships and prizes are to be established and managed at UTS.

This Policy is supported by and should be read in conjunction with the Scholarship and Prize Establishment and Management Procedures.

The Scholarships and Prizes Policy is also available as a PDF document.

Dates
  • Policy approved 04/06/2014
  • Policy takes effect 16/07/2014
  • Policy is due for review (up to five years) 07/2019
  • Policy amendment approved 30/03/2016
  • Policy amendment takes effect 15/04/2016
Approved by Academic Board
Latest amendment: Academic Board (see change history for details)
Implementation Officer Director, Student Administration Unit
Relevant to All staff and all students
Related documents
Legislation
File number UR12/1274
Superseded documents Policy and Procedures for the Administration of Prizes, 2000
Guidelines for the Acceptance of New Prizes, 2000

Contents

1. Purpose

This Scholarships and Prizes Policy (the Policy) has been designed to provide clear principles and a transparent framework for the establishment and management of scholarships and prizes at UTS. The Policy clearly articulates expectations and standards for the UTS community of students, staff, alumni, sponsors and donors.

2. Scope

The Scholarships and Prizes Policy and its supporting documentation applies to all staff and students of UTS and outlines a standardised framework for the establishment and management of scholarships and prizes at UTS.

Prizes and scholarships established prior to the implementation of this Policy are not required to meet the minimum values articulated here, but where possible, should be renegotiated to meet these approved minimum values.

3. Definitions

This section outlines the different types of UTS scholarships and prizes.

3.1 Awards

An award is a generic term used to describe both scholarships and prizes. In cases where an existing scholarship or prize (established prior to the implementation of this Policy) is referred to as an 'award', this should be categorised and managed as either a 'scholarship' or a 'prize' according to the definitions outlined in this Policy. These awards are not required to undergo a formal title change, but where possible, should be retitled to meet the categorisation outlined below.

3.2 Prizes

A prize is a once-only award for meritorious achievement made on the basis of specific academic or non-academic (sporting or community achievement, etc.) criteria. Subject to the minimum value for prizes detailed below, a funding commitment may be made for single or multiple prizes.

UTS has six different prize categories:

3.2.1 Donor-funded prizes can be donated by non-commercial or commercial entities. Where the donation is made by a non-commercial entity (that is, the intent of entity is non-commercial, such as an individual or a charitable entity), it should be established with a minimum value of $500 for each recipient. Where the donation is made by a commercial entity or professional organisation, it should be established with a minimum value of $1000 for each recipient.

3.2.2 Externally sponsored prizes are funded by commercial entities and professional organisations, and should be established with a minimum value of $1000 for each recipient.

3.2.3 Memorial prizes (externally funded) are established and awarded in memory of a past student, staff member or other member of the University community and should be established with a minimum value of $500 for each recipient.

3.2.4 In-kind prizes (such as books, vouchers, computers, etc.) should be established with a minimum value of $500 for each recipient. Where the value of the in-kind prize cannot be measured clearly in monetary terms, they are to be established with the approval of the Provost.

3.2.5 Internally funded prizes are funded from faculty or organisational unit funds and are established with the approval of the Provost.

3.2.6 Team prizes can comprise of any of the preceding prize categories, in line with their minimum values. The minimum value is applicable to the team as a whole.

3.3 Scholarships

A scholarship is an award to support students, usually financially, on the basis of specified criteria and conditions, for a minimum of one semester, up to a maximum duration of a full course of study. Each new scholarship must specify the number of recipients and have a minimum total value of $5000 for each recipient (for example, over a three-year course, each annual payment is $1666 for each recipient). Existing scholarships below the minimum value are to be renegotiated (where possible) to meet the $5000 minimum threshold during the next review process defined in the conditions of award for each award. The minimum funding commitment for scholarships is three years.

Normally, students should be awarded no more than one merit scholarship at any given time. Exceptions to this rule should be articulated in the scholarship conditions of award.

UTS has 10 different scholarship types, as outlined below. Scholarships may be a single type of award or be a combination of the following attributes (for example, merit/equity or industry/equity).

3.3.1 Cooperative education scholarships are awards sponsored by industry and combine financial benefits with structured training through industry placements. In some cases, these scholarships may also offer the possibility of graduate recruitment. Cooperative education programs are three-way partnerships between UTS, sponsor organisations and students. These are normally awarded at course commencement and last the duration of the course of study. Cooperative education scholarships have a value of no less than $14,000 per annum.

3.3.2 Coursework scholarships are awarded to students during their coursework study.

3.3.3 Equity scholarships are awards to assist students with a demonstrated financial need and/or other condition(s) of disadvantage (for example, from a rural background or remote location, students with carer responsibilities, single parents, and/or students with diagnosed medical conditions). These scholarships may be awarded at any point during a course of study.

3.3.4 Exchange scholarships are once-only awards to enable UTS students to study overseas for one or more semesters. These may be awarded at any point during a course of study.

3.3.5 Fee exemption scholarships can take the form of financial assistance payments, or student fee waiver by UTS, and may be awarded at any point during a course of study.

3.3.6 Graduate research scholarships are awards granted to students undertaking research degrees. These scholarships may be awarded at any point during a course of study.

3.3.7 A grant is a once-only financial assistance payment for a specific purpose (such as travel or accommodation) and is usually awarded for the duration of one semester only.

3.3.8 Industry scholarships are payments provided by private or public industry for study in a particular course and may require a component of industry placement or internship. These may be awarded at any point during a course of study.

3.3.9 Merit scholarships are awards made on the basis of academic merit only and may be awarded at any point during a course of study.

3.3.10 International sponsored student scholarships are awards made by the Australian government (or government departments) or by foreign governments. These awards are usually governed by the relevant government regulations, and terms of the awards may be included in specific agreements with UTS for the provision of financial assistance to international students, which can be in various forms and payment arrangements.

3.4 Other definitions

3.4.1 Award name refers to the title of the scholarship or prize. The name of scholarships and prizes should be kept as short and clear as possible and, in the case of donors and sponsors, should avoid the use of commercial slogans.

3.4.2 Benefit refers to the particular payment or other advantage that an award recipient is given or receives as part of their scholarship or prize, for example:

  • a cash benefit or benefits via bank transfer
  • a cheque (usually for prizes only)
  • a tuition fee payment on the recipient's behalf
  • receipt of goods or services
  • an internship
  • recognition for meritorious achievement or community service.

Awards can be made up of single or multiple benefits.

3.4.3 Conditions of award outline the requirements of the scholarship or prize made in accordance with this Policy, which includes but is not limited to:

  • the name of the scholarship or prize
  • eligibility criteria, selection criteria and terms for the award of the scholarship or prize
  • value
  • funding arrangements
  • requirements for termination of a recipient's award
  • endorsement of stakeholders.

Appropriate drafting of these conditions is vital to promote clear and efficient negotiations between internal UTS units and faculties as well as external parties.

3.4.4 Eligibility criteria are the standards and benchmarks that all candidates must fulfil in order to be considered for an award. The eligibility criteria must be defined in the conditions of award. Eligibility criteria must be broad enough to result in sufficient numbers of people being eligible and to attract sufficient applicants. Data of current cohorts of students should be used to assess this during the creation of the conditions of award. Awards with low numbers of eligible students, or low applicant numbers are to be reviewed and the conditions of award amended.

3.4.5 Selection criteria are the standards and benchmarks that the selection committee/panel use to rank applicants and select award recipients. The selection criteria must be defined in the conditions of award and are the only criteria to be used in the process of ranking and selecting recipients. The criteria should be broad enough to allow a reasonable number of candidates to be eligible, clear enough to allow the committee/panel to make an informed decision and robust enough to enable separation of equally ranked candidates.

3.4.6 Cross-faculty scholarships and prizes are those that may be awarded jointly by two or more faculties or are not faculty-specific. Examples of cross-faculty awards include those from Jumbunna, Equity and Diversity Unit, Scholarships Office, Graduate Research School, UTS International and UTS Union Ltd.

3.4.7 Donor is any person, entity or organisation making a donation or other benefit to UTS for the establishment or maintenance of an award.

3.4.8 Faculty-based scholarships and prizes are those that are awarded and owned by a single faculty.

3.4.9 Offeree is a person who has been offered, but has not yet accepted, an award.

3.4.10 Owning faculty/unit refers to the faculty or unit that establishes and authorises the payment or benefits of and manages the conditions of a scholarship or prize.

The Scholarships Office is responsible for managing coursework scholarships that are open to students from more than one faculty or are non-course specific, scholarships that are open to both coursework and research students and specific processes for other coursework scholarships upon request from and negotiation with the owning faculty/unit.

The Graduate Research School is responsible for managing scholarships and cross-faculty prizes for graduate research students.

3.4.11 Recipient is a person who has been made an offer for and has provided written receipt of an award. A recipient is a beneficiary of a scholarship or prize.

3.4.12 Sponsor refers to a person, organisation or government that provides funds or support in the manner of sponsorship to the University or its students. Sponsors are different from donors in that they receive specified material benefits in return for their support.

3.4.13 Sponsorship refers to the transfer of money, property and/or other benefit to UTS or its students by a sponsor in a transaction where the sponsor receives specified material benefits in return. Sponsorship is also used, in particular for government-supported international students, to refer to students who are being supported by them.

3.4.14 Once-only awards are those for which each student is eligible at one point during their time at UTS.

3.4.15 Scholarship selection committees rank applicants and select award recipients in accordance with the selection criteria defined in the conditions of award. The membership consists of either the dean of the relevant faculty (or their nominee) for faculty-based scholarships or the relevant director (or nominee) for non-faculty-based scholarships, as chair, and at least two other UTS staff members. Where the scholarship has an equity component, one of the committee members must be a staff member experienced in equity issues. Where the scholarship is funded by an external donor or a sponsor, and where stipulated in the conditions of award, the donor or sponsor (or their nominee) will be invited to be a member of the committee, in addition to the other members.

3.4.16 Prize selection committees rank applicants and select award recipients in accordance with the selection criteria defined in the conditions of award. Selection committee composition and terms of reference are further outlined in the Scholarship and Prize Establishment and Management Procedures (Appendix D).

4. Policy principles

The principles underpinning this Policy are:

  • to implement a transparent, clear, practical, ethical and strategic approach to the establishment and award of scholarships and prizes that is adopted thoroughly and fairly across UTS
  • to clearly define the responsibilities of staff involved in the establishment, management and administration of scholarships and prizes
  • to ensure a clear understanding of the language and practices around the award of scholarships and prizes
  • to support the objectives of the UTS Strategic Plan.

5. Policy statements

The following policy statements articulate the stages of scholarship and prize development management at UTS. All parties must contact the Scholarships Office in the first instance to initiate the establishment of a UTS scholarship or prize or for clarification on approved procedures. The Scholarships Office facilitates the establishment of coursework scholarships and all UTS prizes, and the establishment of scholarships open to both coursework and research students. The Graduate Research School facilitates the establishment of graduate research scholarships.

5.1 Establishment of awards

To establish a UTS award, the conditions of award should be drafted and funding secured. The conditions of award are drafted in consultation with either the Scholarships Office or Graduate Research School and all relevant stakeholders on an agreed template. The process for securing funding for UTS scholarships and prizes is governed by the Fundraising Policy. The authorised delegates for fundraising, and acceptance of donations and sponsorship are set out in Delegation 1.9, 'Fundraising and naming', in the Standing Delegations of Authority. This process is further outlined in Scholarship and Prize Establishment and Management Procedures.

5.2 Approval of awards

Approval for UTS awards will be determined according to Delegation 4.11.

Delegation 4.11 also outlines processes for approving a scholarship or prize that does not comply with the requirement of this Policy or the associated procedure in relation to the minimum value of a scholarship or prize, and internally funded prizes (by faculties or organisational units).

For UTS coursework scholarships and all prizes, the Scholarships Office and the Scholarship and Prize Establishment and Management Procedures provide further details on approval procedures.

5.3 Marketing of awards

Refer to the Scholarship and Prize Establishment and Management Procedures for information on the communication of approved scholarships and prizes.

5.4 Award application

Applicants should be able to apply for a UTS award through the UTS website, where possible. Application conditions should be outlined in the conditions of award.

5.5 Award recipient selection

This section outlines the general principles for selecting scholarship and prize recipients. UTS retains the right to make the final decision on the selection of scholarship and prize recipients. Normally, the owning faculty/unit is responsible for the selection of scholarship and prize recipients and the overall management of its established scholarships and prizes. Where there are multiple owners or the involvement of another area has been negotiated with the Scholarships Office or the Graduate Research School as part of the establishment process, the responsibilities and rights of each owner should be clearly articulated and agreed before the award is approved.

5.5.1 Selection of prize recipients is undertaken by the owning faculty/unit in accordance with the advertised Conditions of Award. Refer to Delegation 4.11 on prizes, award and scholarships for information on the approval of award recipients. A selection committee is required for any prize where a qualitative judgment on the outcome is required. Selection committee composition and terms of reference are further outlined in the Scholarship and Prize Establishment and Management Procedures (Appendix D). Prizes with objectively clear selection criteria, such as highest Weighted Average Mark (WAM) or Grade Point Average (GPA), do not require a committee. For these prizes the Dean (or nominee) may notify the recipients of awards.

5.5.2 Selection of coursework scholarship recipients is delegated to the relevant dean (or nominee) for faculty-based scholarships or the relevant director (or nominee) for other scholarships (Delegation 4.11). The dean or director will chair a selection committee or panel made up of at least three UTS staff members (including the chair). It is the responsibility of the selection committee to facilitate the dean or director to make decisions about scholarship and prize award recipients based on the criteria specified in the conditions of award. Where a scholarship has an equity component, one of the committee members must be a staff member experienced in equity issues. Where a scholarship has external donor or sponsor funding, and where stipulated by the conditions of award, the Chair of the selection committee or panel will invite the donor or sponsor (or their nominee) to join the committee or panel.

5.5.3 Selection of graduate research scholarship recipients is delegated to the Dean, Graduate Research School (Delegation 4.11). The selection process for graduate research scholarships is approved by the Graduate Research School Board. Graduate research scholarships are awarded on a competitive basis by a committee or on recommendation by a faculty as part of a specific research grant or project.

5.6 Making and receiving an offer of scholarship

  • Recipients of all UTS scholarships must be notified of their offer in writing from the faculty or unit responsible for managing the award. This letter should include the details and conditions of award.
  • Scholarship offerees must accept their scholarship online or by signing a written agreement to all conditions of their award as specified in the scholarship offer.
  • The Scholarships Office or the faculty/unit responsible for managing the award can provide advice to offerees on offer letters and acceptances.

5.7 Payment

Eligible recipients of scholarships and prizes will be paid using the UTS supported system for reconciliation, for reporting and auditing purposes. Refer to the Scholarship and Prize Establishment and Management Procedures for information on the payment processes for scholarships and prizes.

5.8 Ongoing eligibility

Scholarship recipients may be obliged by the scholarship conditions of award to meet stated ongoing eligibility criteria. Where scholarship recipients are required to meet ongoing eligibility criteria, this will be assessed after the relevant period, and prior to any further payments being made.

If assessed as ineligible, the recipient must be notified in writing of termination of the scholarship as described in section 5.9.

5.9 Termination of a scholarship

Before the scholarship (coursework) duration is complete, a recipient's scholarship may only be terminated under the authority of the chair of the scholarship selection committee on the recommendation of the committee, under the following circumstances:

  • the recipient requests termination of the scholarship in writing
  • the recipient breaches any of the written conditions of award
  • if UTS determines that the student is guilty of misconduct and, after consultation with the Director, Governance Support Unit, the delegate able to award the scholarship deems it is not appropriate for the recipient to continue to hold the scholarship.

If a recipient is found to have breached the conditions of award, the recipient must be notified of the award termination in writing by the owning faculty/unit as outlined in the Scholarship and Prize Establishment and Management Procedures.

5.10 Management

Scholarships and prizes, and their recipients, will be managed according to their specific conditions of award and as outlined in the Scholarship and Prize Establishment and Management Procedures.

5.10.1 Records management: all areas of UTS are to record scholarship and prize information and expenditure in a manner that is compliant with the UTS Records Management Vice-Chancellor's Directive. Refer to the Scholarship and Prize Establishment and Management Procedures for information.

5.11 Review of awards

Scholarships and prizes must be reviewed by the owning faculty/unit every five years at a minimum, or as otherwise required. Further details are outlined in the Scholarship and Prize Establishment and Management Procedures.

5.12 Disestablishing awards

Where a scholarship or prize will not continue to be offered, the award may be disestablished. The disestablishing process is managed by the Scholarships Office. External reports to donors and funding bodies are managed by the External Relations Office or by individual faculties if the activity of managing external relationships is based in faculties. Further details are outlined in the Scholarship and Prize Establishment and Management Procedures.

5.13 Conflicts of interest

Staff who believe at any time that a conflict of interest has arisen in relation to an award must bring this to the attention of their immediate supervisor. (Refer to section 4.4 in the Code of Conduct .)

6. Roles and responsibilities

This section outlines those individuals, offices and groups who have specific responsibilities with regard to this Policy.

6.1 Accountable Officer

The accountable officer is the Provost.

6.1.1 The Provost may:

  1. recommend and approve Scholarship and Prize Establishment and Management Procedures
  2. approve the establishment of a new scholarship or prize or continuation of an existing scholarship or prize under review that does not comply with the requirements of this Policy or the associated procedures in relation to the minimum value of a scholarship or prize, and
  3. approve the establishment of internally funded prizes (see section 5.2 above and Delegation 4.11).

6.2 Implementation Officer

The implementation officer is the Director, Student Administration Unit.

6.3 Other roles and responsibilities

6.3.1 The Director, Student Administration Unit is responsible for approving the conditions of award for cross-faculty scholarships and prizes (see also Delegation 4.11).

6.3.2 Faculty Boards are responsible for approving the conditions of award for faculty-based scholarships and prizes (see also Delegation 4.11).

6.3.3 The Graduate Research School Board is responsible for: approving the conditions of award for graduate research scholarships and cross-faculty research prizes, and the application of the eligibility criteria of such scholarship and prize candidates (see also Delegation 4.11).

6.3.4 The Dean, Graduate Research School is responsible for approving recipients of graduate research scholarships and cross-faculty prizes (see also Delegation 4.11).

6.3.5 Faculty deans (or nominees) are responsible for authorising faculty-based scholarships and prizes outcomes, on the advice of the relevant scholarship selection committees, for:

  1. approving recipients of faculty-based scholarships and prizes (see also Delegation 4.11)
  2. approving recipients' requests or changes in recipients' circumstances not specified or addressed in the scholarship conditions of award
  3. terminating a recipient's scholarship in cases where the recipient:
    1. requests termination of the scholarship
    2. has breached the conditions of award
    3. has a penalty imposed for misconduct.

6.3.6 Unit directors (or nominees) are responsible for authorising non-faculty-based scholarships and prizes outcomes, on the advice of the relevant scholarship selection committees for:

  1. approving recipients of scholarships and prizes (under the Delegation 4.11)
  2. approving recipients' requests or changes in recipients' circumstances not specified or addressed in the scholarship conditions of award
  3. terminating a scholarship in cases where the recipient:
    1. requests termination of the scholarship
    2. has breached the conditions of award
    3. has a penalty imposed for misconduct.

6.3.7 The Scholarships Office is responsible for the management of coursework scholarships that are open to students from more than one faculty or are non-course specific, scholarships which are open to both coursework and research students, and for managing specific processes for other coursework scholarships upon request from and negotiation with the owning faculty/unit.

6.3.8 The Graduate Research School is responsible for the management of graduate research scholarships.

6.3.9 The External Relations Office is the University office including Alumni Relations, Development and External Engagement.

The Development Office within the External Relations Office is responsible for managing the University's relationships with donors and prospective donors, and for providing leadership and management of philanthropy and corporate partnerships on behalf of UTS in accordance with the Fundraising Policy. It is responsible for the receipt and distribution of donated funds. It also develops and implements strategies for donor relationship management, in partnership with other UTS staff.

7. Acknowledgements

  • Student Support Unit
  • Academic Administration Committee
  • Governance Support Unit

8. Version control and change history

Effective date Version Approved by, resolution no. (date) Amendment
21/12/2012 1 Academic Board, AB 12/5/85.3 (24/10/2012) New Policy.
16/07/2014 2 Academic Board, AB/14-2/32.5 (04/06/2014) Amendments to definitions, roles and responsibilities, editorial changes. Minor changes to wording for clarification.
16/07/2014 2.1 Academic Board, by executive action (09/07/2014) Amendments to funding commitment in section 3.2. Minor changes to wording for clarification.
15/04/2016 2.2 Academic Board, AB/16-1/12.2 (30/03/2016) Amendments to institute selection committees for prizes where a qualitative judgement on outcome is required. Minor editorial amendments, including amendments to cover disestablishment of the Registrar position.

Appendix A. Scholarship and prize attributes summary table

  Scholarship Prize
Value New scholarships must be established at a minimum value of $5000 to each recipient and the conditions of award must specify the number of recipients (for example, over a three year course, each annual payment is $1666 for the recipient).

New scholarships below $5000 need approval from the Provost (see also Delegation 4.11).

Minimum initial funding commitment of three years.
Donor-funded prizes have a minimum value of $500, where donated by a non-commercial entity (ie the intent of the entity is non-commercial). Where the donation is made by a commercial entity, the prize should be established with a minimum value of $1000.

Externally sponsored prizes have a minimum value of $1000.

Memorial prizes (externally funded) have a minimum value of $500.

Internally funded prizes can only be established with the approval of the Provost.

The minimum funding commitment for prizes is a once-only award.
Duration Minimum one semester, maximum full duration of course. Prizes are a one-off benefit/value.
Payment to recipient Can be planned flexibly to suit the scholarship or duration. For example, payment could be made once per semester, once per year, fortnightly. Tuition fee payments are normally to be made directly to the recipient's UTS tuition fee account. One-off payments only.
Purpose Financially support current or future students during their studies at UTS. Reward a current or past UTS student for achievement.
Criteria Awarded on the basis of merit or equity, or both.

Eligibility criteria may also apply to potential students not as yet admitted to UTS.
Awarded on the basis of achievement (academic or non-academic, eg sporting, community achievement), usually while the candidate was a student of UTS.