Scholarships – nurturing enquiring minds.

Imagine what could be discovered if more young people were given the opportunity to explore the challenges facing our environment.

Cawthron Institute partners with tertiary institutions to host undergraduate students. We want to provide the time for graduates, technicians and scientists to develop the skills and knowledge they need to solve pressing environmental issues. Scholarships are important to support the future of scientific discovery and provide experiences for our future innovators.

At Cawthron, scholarships are specifically designed to provide a balance of hands-on learning experiences and scientific excellence. We invite you to contribute to one of our existing Scholarship Funds or to establish your own.

Our scholarships

Cawthron Foundation has established two scholarship funds to support undergraduate students studying at New Zealand universities. 

These inaugural scholarships funds are named after agricultural chemist Sir Theodore Rigg and mycologist Kathleen Curtis – two highly-regarded scientists who contributed a remarkable amount to Cawthron Institute and New Zealand. Coincidentally, they both relied heavily on scholarships early in their careers.

Sir Theodore Rigg Scholarship Fund

Theodore Rigg (1888-1972) was one of Cawthron’s most renowned scientists. A gifted athlete and scholar, he received undergraduate and postgraduate scholarships. In 1920 Rigg joined Cawthron as an agricultural scientist. He became head of agriculture and chemistry in 1924, assistant director in 1928, and director in 1933. Theodore Rigg retired in 1956 having written over 80 scientific papers, and devoted his entire scientific career to Cawthron Institute.

This fund provides scholarships for undergraduate students.

Kathleen Curtis (Lady Rigg) Scholarship Fund

Kathleen Curtis (1892-1994) was the first New Zealand woman to graduate with a Doctor of Science. She was awarded many scholarships, including the 1851 Exhibition Scholarship, for the high quality of her academic work. Curtis was a founding staff member of Cawthron Institute and the first woman appointed to a research position in New Zealand. Curtis was also an active community leader.

This fund provides scholarships for undergraduate women.

Listen to the inaugural scholarship recipients talk about their experience at Cawthron

How you can help

Your generosity will help support the leaders, innovators and problem-solvers of the future. You can contribute towards our existing Scholarship Funds, or through establishing your own.

You may wish to honour someone special – a family member or someone who has made an outstanding contribution in their chosen field.

We encourage you to contact us if you would like to support our scholarships. 

Further information:

Download our scholarship brochure

Read about the inaugural scholars


Sir Theodore Rigg and Kathleen Curtis