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Photo of Bernard Cyril Freyberg (photographed 1925).

Photo of Bernard Cyril Freyberg (photographed in 1925).

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Related external websites

Dictionary of New Zealand Biography website (www.dnzb.govt.nz)

New Zealand Vice-Chancellors' Committee website (www.nzvcc.ac.nz)

Apply for a Freyberg Scholarship
(New Zealand Defence Scholarships)

It is appropriate that the name of the late Lord Freyberg should be associated with the scholarships given his distinguished record in the New Zealand Armed Forces and his great contribution to New Zealand security.

Read more about Bernard Cyril Freyberg from the Dictionary of New Zealand Biography website (www.dnzb.govt.nz)

Freyberg Scholarships are designed to encourage graduate study in areas relevant to national security in the widest sense. On completion of their study it is hoped that the graduates will return to New Zealand and make a positive contribution towards the debate and analysis of Defence issues in the public service, tertiary education or journalism.

The New Zealand Vice-Chancellors’ Committee on behalf of the Ministry of Defence and the New Zealand Defence Forces administers the Freyberg Scholarship.

The information provided below is intend as a guide to potential applicants only, and the definitive criteria along with application forms can be obtained The Registrar at any New Zealand university or from the New Zealand Vice-Chancellors’ Committee for overseas applicants.

Applications close on 1 October each year.


Freyberg Scholarships are awarded for the purpose of encouraging graduate study into areas relevant to national security in the widest sense of that term. Study should be undertaken at a recognised institution in New Zealand or an Asia-Pacific country, including Canada and the United States. Preference may be given however to applicants who have enrolled to study defence or strategic studies at a New Zealand University or who have enrolled in the Graduate Studies Programme in Strategy and Defence at the Australian National University. Proposals for a course of studies at an overseas institution located elsewhere will be considered on their merits. It is intended that graduates will return to New Zealand, where it is hoped they will be better fitted to make a positive contribution towards debate and analysis of Defence issues in such fields as government service, tertiary education or journalism.


One or more scholarships may be awarded annually. NZ$70,000 per annum will be available for the scholarships.

No scholarships shall be awarded if the Selection Board is of the opinion that there is no candidate for a scholarship who is of sufficient merit.


Selection shall be made by a Selection Board consisting of the Secretary of Defence, the Chief of Defence Force and the Director of the Centre for Strategic Studies, or their nominees.


The tenure of a scholarship will be determined by the Selection Board but would normally be twelve months.

Every scholar shall enter upon the program of study the year following application and selection. (The scholar must report to the course supervisor not later than one week before the commencement of lectures.)

Value and payment

Emoluments will be determined by the Selection Board. Payments will be made to each scholar in such manner and on such conditions as the Minister of Defence may from time to time determine. However, payments will normally be made six monthly in advance.


The scholarships shall be open to persons who are New Zealand residents or permanent residents and who meet the following academic requirements. They should normally have obtained at least second class honours, division A, or equivalent in their qualifying degree and have completed academic studies in political science, history, economics, or some other discipline that may be considered appropriate foundation for such study.

The Selection Board shall consider each application on its merits, including the Institution at which the study is to be undertaken and in every case, final acceptance shall be subject to the approval of the appropriate Board of Studies in the relevant university.

Return to New Zealand

Candidates for the scholarships must undertake in writing that if awarded a scholarship they will at the conclusion of their study under the scholarship return to New Zealand to take up residence in New Zealand for not less than two years. The Selection Board may, however, waive this requirement in any particular case or release scholarship holders from the undertaking given by them.

Personal qualifications

In awarding scholarships the Selection Board shall have regard not only to the educational attainment but also to the character and qualities of leadership of the candidates.


Candidates are requested by the Board to send in as part of their applications: a statement of their school history (where relevant) and general activities; evidence of their personal character and capacity for leadership, and a Statement detailing why they wish to undertake the proposed course of studies and what they wish to gain from it.

Full-time study

Scholars shall be required to devote their whole time during the tenure of the scholarship to their program of studies and may not hold a position of employment, except on such terms and conditions as the Selection Board may from time to time allow.


A scholarship may be tenable with any other scholarship, fellowship or award with the permission of the Selection Board. In granting permission the Selection Board may impose such conditions as it thinks fit, whether as to reduction in the emolument of the scholarship or otherwise.

Reports and theses

Every scholar shall furnish to the Selection Board, through the Secretary of Defence, such reports (if any) as s/he may require. One copy of any thesis written is to be lodged with the Secretary of Defence, who will, in turn, provide a copy to the Chief of Defence Force.

Suspension or termination

Following consultation, the Selection Board may at any time suspend or terminate any scholarship emolument as may be determined, if the Board is satisfied that the scholar is not diligently pursuing the agreed program of study or has failed to comply with any of the terms and conditions on which the scholarship was awarded; and a scholarship shall be terminated and no further payments shall be made if a scholar ceases to, pursue the agreed program.

Administrative matters

Scholars will be personally responsible for all costs associated with their time of study. This responsibility will include arranging and meeting the costs of travel to, from and in the country of study, accommodation and all personal expenses during the tenure of the scholarship. They are likewise responsible for obtaining their own passports, and meeting the charges and levies required by the university. They may, however, seek advice from New Zealand Defence Force officials in Wellington at any time. In Wellington, the contact office shall be the Section Head, Policy Planning, Ministry of Defence, Wellington.


Candidates shall make initial application on the application forms available from the university Registrars or from the New Zealand Vice-Chancellors' Committee (NZVCC).

As detailed on the application form, candidates are to supply the names of four referees and are to enclose with their applications an outline of personal particulars. The latter should include an indication of future occupational intentions. They should also enclose the course outline from the relevant University Calendar.

Applications must reach the Registrar of the candidate's university (or in other cases the NZVCC) not later than the first day of October in the year preceding the scholarship year. If the candidate is not currently at university in New Zealand then the correspondence should be addressed to:

New Zealand Vice-Chancellors' Committee (NZVCC)
PO Box 11-915

Visit the Freyberg Scholarship page on the New Zealand Vice-Chancellors' Committee website (www.nzvcc.ac.nz)

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