Pat Conaghan MP

Cowper MP supports Commonwealth Scholarships Program

Federal Member for Cowper Pat Conaghan is encouraging young residents and ex-Australian Defence Force personnel in the Coffs Coast and Grafton region to apply for the Commonwealth Scholarships Program.

Mr Conaghan met with several former and current applicants in Coffs Harbour on March 2.

He praised the work of BUSY At Work, a not for profit organisation providing apprenticeships, employment and community programs in the region.

“BUSY At Work is contracted by the Federal Government to coordinate and deliver the scholarships program in the Coffs Coast region,” he said.

“BUSY At Work provide apprenticeship, employment and education solutions that assist job seekers and  meet the needs of industry and employers,” he said.


The program is funded under the Federal Government’s $585 million Delivering Skills for Today and Tomorrow skills package in the 2019−20 Budget.

“The Commonwealth Scholarships Program is awarding young Australians and ex-Australian Defence Force personnel up to $13,000 to undertake an eligible VET qualification from Certificate III through to Advanced Diploma,” he said.

“If eligible for a scholarship, you can receive up to $5,000 per year for up to two years of study. You can also receive up to an additional $3,000 for completing a 20-day paid internship. If you receive a scholarship you can choose to study part-time or full-time.

“It was great to see the success of the Commonwealth Scholarships Program being delivered by BUSY at Work.”

The program is open to young Australians aged 15 to 24 years, or ex Australian Defence Force personnel (of any age and who have exited in the last two years. Applicants must be in full-time work or school at the time of applying and must be living in one of the nominated regional areas.

Applications are encouraged from indigenous residents or people living with an illness, injury or disability, or are from a culturally or linguistically diverse background.

To date the Commonwealth Scholarships Program for young Australians has assisted 54 participants in the Coffs Coast and Grafton region.

For more information including how to apply online, visit