Awards and scholarships

View the awards and scholarships available to students in the School of Art History, Classics and Religious Studies.

In honour of the acclaimed New Zealand artist and Director of the National Art Gallery, Melvin Day, and his wife Oroya Day, a former lecture in art history at Victoria University, a scholarship programme has been established by the Melvin and Oroya Day Trust (the Day Trust) to support MA or PhD students who have studied Art History at Victoria University of Wellington.

Titled the Oroya and Melvin Day Postgraduate Scholarship for Art History (the Day Scholarship) grants will be given to selected applicants who have studied Art History at Victoria University of Wellington and who have been accepted into a postgraduate program in art history (at MA or PhD level) at a university or other institution outside of New Zealand.

The winner of the Day Scholarship will be decided by the Day Trust in consultation with a member of the Art History programme at Victoria.

Applicants will be invited to send in an application to the Art History programme by June 1st of each year.

Applications should include a letter from the candidate, a copy of the candidate’s CV, a letter of acceptance from an overseas institution, and two letters of recommendation from scholars familiar with the candidate’s work. The Art History programme will then pass on a maximum of three applications to the Day Trust for further consideration. The winner of the Day Scholarship will be announced on June 30th.

The amount of the Day Scholarship will be up to $20,000 and may be used as the applicant sees fit in connection with their participation in the overseas post-graduate programme for which they have been accepted, including for payment of fees, travel costs and accommodation and living expenses while attending the programme.

In return, the winner of the Day Scholarship will report to the Trust with a financial statement as to how the money was spent and, at the end of their first year, a brief report on their studies.

The Day Trust will also consider providing financial assistance for Victoria-based MA and PhD students in Art History to facilitate their studies in other ways.

Grants may be awarded to students to undertake research abroad; to attend and present papers at overseas conferences; and/or to support the publication of a student’s MA or PhD thesis after graduation.

Application for this support can be made on an individual basis, and will include a letter from the candidate, details of the travel, research or publication project, a budget, and a letter of support from the student's supervisor. Applications can be made at any time. These awards will be called Melvin Day Research Grants and will be awarded on a case-by-case basis.

Art History


The Art History Programme and Adam Art Gallery Te Pataka Toi at Victoria University of Wellington jointly administer the Ronald Woolf Memorial Endowment—a generous gift of the Woolf family, presented to Victoria University of Wellington in 2015 in recognition of the contribution to photography by the late Ronald Woolf.

This Endowment provides funds to support young photographers, students interested in the history and practice of photography and emerging curators of photography.

Funds are allocated on an annual or biennial basis towards exhibitions, symposia and publications that further the Endowment’s educational and creative aims. The Endowment is managed by the Victoria University of Wellington Foundation. Allocation of funds is decided by an advisory committee consisting of the Professor of Art History; Programme Director Art History; Director of the Adam Art Gallery Te Pataka Toi; a member of the Woolf family, and a professional museum curator.

In 2016, the committee is Professor Geoffrey Batchen; David Maskill, Senior Lecturer in Art History; Christina Barton, Adam Art Gallery Director; Deborah Hart; and Athol McCredie, Curator of Photography at Te Papa Tongarewa Museum of New Zealand.

For further information about the aims and activities of the Endowment contact David Maskill or Christina Barton.

To find out more about gifts and bequests to Victoria University of Wellington, contact Rosalene Fogel 

Osborne Prize

The Osborne Prize in Art History, a book prize, is awarded annually to the top Art History student at 100-level.

Mossman Maori/Pasifika Art History Prize

The Maori/Pasifika Art History Prize of $1000 is awarded annually to a New Zealand-based Maori/Pasifika student who has the best average grade in two 100-level Art History courses and who is intending to Major in Art History. To be eligible for the award, recipients must enrol for full-time study at the 200-level of an Art History course in the following year at Victoria University.

Chartwell Trust Student Art Writing Prize

The Chartwell Trust Student Art Writing Prize of $500 is awarded annually for a review or essay addressing an exhibition at the Adam Art Gallery or a work from the Victoria University of Wellington Art Collection. The prize is open to all Victoria students attending Victoria University. It is administered by the Adam Art Gallery.


Alex Scobie Research Prize

The Alex Scobie Research Prize is awarded annually to the student in Classics who has completed the best substantial piece of writing contributing to research in an area of Classics.

The amount is decided from time to time by the Academic Board.

Erasmus Scholarship

This scholarship is offered to the best student in Latin in the Universities Bursary exam who intends to complete a major in Latin, Greek or, preferably, both, at Victoria University. The value of the scholarship is $700 per annum for three years, irrespective of other awards.

Essay Prizes in Classics

One prize is awarded each year to a student in any faculty submitting the best essay on one of a number of topics prescribed for this purpose by the Classics programme.

A second prize is awarded to the student submitting the best CLAS, LATI or GREE essay at 300 or Honours (400) level (excluding research essays).

The current value of these prizes is approximately $400.

Rankine Brown Prize in Classics

This prize arises from a fund subscribed in 1946 by the ex-students and friends of Victoria to commemorate the work of Professor Sir J Rankine Brown in the Chair of Classics 1899-1945.

The prize shall be open to any student completing a first year of Greek or Latin, i.e. completing GREE 113 or LATI 104 (LATI 214 in the case of a student entering 200-level Latin directly). The prize shall be offered annually and shall be awarded to the student worthy of the award.

H A Murray Prize in Classics

This prize is awarded to the best student at second year level in LATI, GREE or CLAS courses. The prize, valued at approximately $150, may only be held once.

Batterbee Prize in Greek

The Batterbee Prize, valued at approximately $220, is awarded to the best student with first or second class Honours in Greek.

Madle Prize in Classics

The Madle Prize in Classics will be awarded to the best mature student (over the age of 25) studying Greek or Roman History. Valued at $500.

Religious Studies

William Wallace Scholarship

The William Wallace Scholarship is available biannually to post graduate students in Religious Studies.

Museum and Heritage Studies

Museum Graduate Internship Programme

Graduates from the Museum and Heritage Studies Programme are eligible to apply to The Museum Graduate Internship Programme (MGIP). MGIP is a National Services Te Paerangi initiative that enables a recent museum studies graduate to work on a project at a museum or gallery, guided by a professional mentor from the museum or gallery.

MGIP is a national project which has been created to:

  1. provide small to medium sized museums and galleries with trained personnel (the interns) who will bring in new knowledge and complete a specified short-term project at the museum or gallery; and
  2. provide museum studies graduates with the opportunity to take up practical projects in a museum or gallery for three months.

During the internship, which is a paid position, the intern is guided by a mentor, who is a museum professional either based on site, or at a larger museum nearby.

Information on Awards, Scholarships and Exchanges is available on the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences' website or on the Scholarships website.