Emergency Management Volunteer Scholarships

The Australian Institute for Disaster Resilience (AIDR) is administering a new $1 million Australian Government scholarship fund to boost education development opportunities for emergency management volunteers. The scholarships are available to Australian citizens or permanent residents. Volunteers in an emergency management agency can undertake studies in accredited units or courses in emergency and disaster management vocational training/education, and higher education.

  • You may be able to receive up to $12,000 for completing vocational education and training and up to $25,000 for higher education.
  • There will be four rounds for scholarship applications between 1 June 2017 and the 15 October 2018 (see table below).
  • A large proportion of the fund was committed in Round One and a smaller and a considerable proportion will be committed in Round Two.
  • It is expected that the remaining pool of funds will be much less for Rounds Three and Four.
  • Advice will be given as to changes in scholarship funding (eligibility criteria and funding priorities) on or before the opening date of each round.
  • Funds must be expended by August 1 2019 for all four Rounds.


ROUND TWO Applications will open Monday 4 September 2017

To apply, you need to register and use the online application portal. Please note that you only need to register and create an account if you starting a new application. If you are resubmitting a previous unsuccessful application, you can request to move your profile so you can edit your existing application using your username and password.


Create an Account and Login:


Read the scholarship funding guidelines:


Important Changes to Round Two Applicants:

  • If you are planning to study Advanced Diploma or Diploma of Public Safety (Emergency Management), you do not need to list the individual Units of Competency. But you must provide a start and end date for your studies.
  • Applicants for higher education courses and individual courses or Units of Competency must where possible still list each unit and its date. 
  • Round Two applicants must be commencing the approved study from January 2018 to 1 August 2019 (the Round Two activity period).

Round Two Priorities:

AIDR is encouraging:

  • indigenous volunteers for higher education or vocational training/education.
  • female volunteers for vocational education.
  • applicants from the Northern Territory, Tasmania, and the Australian Capital Territory.

Example letter:

In completing your application we require you to upload two references, and both need to be connected to the agency with whom you volunteer. You will need to upload two separate documents, an agency endorsement letter, and a reference.

Firstly, the reference need only be a short (1 page) letter that shows someone of seniority who knows you is willing to offer support. It should demonstrate your commitment to ongoing participation in an emergency or disaster management volunteer role. Ideally, it is someone who has known you as a manager and can offer their support. It is helpful if they confirm your role and period of service, any previous role training, and why the training or education might be of service to the agency, and the town/location of the role.

Secondly, the endorsement letter can be very brief but it is one of the most important parts of the application. It demonstrates that you have whole-of-agency support for your application. Although it might be different in each organisation, usually the national or state office, usually the chief executive officer (or equivalent) should endorse you. The example Word template below, shows that a nominated delegate is acceptable (for example, the person given responsibility to act on behalf of the agency in this matter).

This document can be used as the draft for your agency endorsement letter. Please ensure that is signed by the officer and carries the organisation letterhead.



Application Round Applications open Applications close Outcome advised
Round One (CLOSED) 1 June 2017 14 July 2017 25 August 2017
Round Two 4 September 2017 16 October 2017 27 November 2017
Round Three 2 April 2018 14 May 2018 25 June 2018
Round Four 3 September 2018 15 October 2018 26 November 2018


What studies can be undertaken

Applications for course and/or units of study are encouraged for emergency and disaster management.

As a guide, some applicable emergency and disaster management courses and units of study currently advertised by providers are listed below.

The list does not represent all providers or courses that may be eligible for funding, nor does listing imply AIDR’s endorsement of the quality of any program over another.

Study mode options are stated as internal or external. Internal means taught face to face usually at the provider’s premises, but also off site, whereas external includes other modes of delivery such as online and distance education.

The list is based on the current web based information provided by education providers and does not provide all details and may be inaccurate. It is essential that you confirm the details with the education provider when preparing an application.


Course Study Guide  

The following lists online, campus and distance education in both higher education and vocational training.

Higher Education

Australian Universities – Post Graduate

Charles Darwin University

Northern Territory

Internal or External Modes

Master of Emergency and Disaster Management

Graduate Diploma of Emergency and Disaster Management

Graduate Certificate of Emergency and Disaster Management


Edith Cowan University 

Western Australia

External Mode

Master of Disaster and Emergency Response

Graduate Diploma of Disaster and Emergency Response

Graduate Certificate of Disaster and Emergency Response


Charles Sturt University

New South Wales

External Mode

Master of Emergency Management

Graduate Diploma of Emergency Management [exit point only]

Graduate Certificate in Emergency Management [exit point only]


University of Newcastle

New South Wales

Internal or External Modes

Master of Disaster Resilience and Sustainable Development

Graduate Certificate in Disaster Risk Reduction


University of New England

New South Wales

External Mode

Master of Planning and Management of Natural Hazards

Graduate Diploma in Planning and Management of Natural Hazards

Graduate Certificate in Planning and Management of Natural Hazards


RMIT University


Internal and External Mode

Master of Disaster, Design and Development



Queensland University of Technology


Internal Mode

Graduate Certificate in Disaster Management



CQ University


Internal or External Modes

Graduate Certificate in Emergency and Disaster Management

Graduate Certificate in Disaster Risk Reduction


James Cook University 


Internal and External Mode

Graduate Certificate of Disaster Health and Humanitarian Assistance


Australian Universities - undergraduate

Charles Sturt University

New South Wales

External Mode

 Bachelor of Emergency Management

Associate Degree in Emergency Management [exit point only]


CQ University


External Mode

 Bachelor of Emergency Management

Associate Degree in Emergency Management [exit point only]


Higher Education Provider – Post Graduate

Australian Institute of Police Management

New South Wales

Mixed Modes

Graduate Diploma of Executive Leadership (Policing and Emergency Services)


Graduate Certificate in Applied Management (Policing and Emergency Services)



Vocational Qualifications 

Please check information below is correct and  esquire with the provider for details on course availability and current fees before submitting an application.


Technical and further education institutions (or TAFE)

Advanced Diploma of Public Safety (Emergency Management)​

National Centre for Emergency Management Studies (NCEMS)

Tafe NSW: Blended or online delivered nationally                  


Advanced Diploma of Public Safety (Emergency Management)

OR individual or groups of competencies from the list below (Skill set codes)

PUAERMR018 Work in an emergency management context

PUAEMR009B Facilitate emergency risk assessment & PUAEMR012B Determine treatment options

AHCBUS607 Implement a monitoring, evaluation & reporting program

PSPGEN057 Develop & use political nous

PUAEMR030 Manage & Evaluate emergency management exercises & PUAEMR031 Design emergency management exercises

PUAEMR021A Facilitate emergency planning processes

PUAEMR017A Manage recovery functions & services & PUAEMR016A Facilitate community involvement in recovery

PSPGEN075 Build & maintain community relationships

BSBCON601 Develop & maintain business continuity plans

PUAOPE017A Coordinate resources for a multi-agency incident

PUACOM008B Develop & organize public safety programs


Registered Training Organisations (RTOs)

Australian School of Emergency Management


External Mode

PUA60112 Advanced Diploma of Public Safety (Emergency Management)

PUAOPE006B Control multi-agency emergency situations

PUAOPE007B Command agency personnel within a multi-agency emergency response

PUAOPE018A Control a level 2 incident

PUAOPE019A Control a Level 3 Incident



ACIM Solutions

New South Wales

Internal and external (interstate delivery possible)



PUA60112 Advanced Diploma of Public Safety (Emergency Management)

PUA52312 Diploma of Public Safety (Emergency Management)

The following short courses consist of accredited skill sets:

  • Introduction to the emergency management environment
  • Risk and Preparedness
  • Advanced Risk and Preparedness
  • Response and Recovery
  • Project management and Business Continuity
  • Building Community Resilience
  • Deployment Preparedness


College for Law Education and Training

Western Australia



PUA60112 Advanced Diploma of Public Safety (Emergency Management)

PUA52312 Diploma of Public Safety (Emergency Management)


FutureWest Institute

Western Australia


(interstate delivery possible)


PUA60112 Advanced Diploma of Public Safety (Emergency Management)

Level 2 Incident Management Course

Emergency Risk Assessment Course

Design, Manage and Evaluate Exercises Course

Coordinate Resources for a Multi-Agency Incident Course


Questions regarding the scholarship program can be directed to:

Dr Marc Bellette

Volunteer Programs Manager



Read the Minister for Justice The Hon Michael Keenan MP 8 May Media Release