Education Foundation

The OP Education Foundation is a Trust established to help realise our ambitions of being a world-class vocational education and socially sustainable provider.

About Education Foundation 1200X610

Guidelines for grant applications


Objective of the Foundation

OPEF aims to support students and staff in advancing learning, enhancing the learning environment, and contributing to educational excellence.

Eligibility Criteria

Applicants must:

  • Be currently an enrolled student or staff member at Otago Polytechnic.
  • Demonstrate how their project benefits Otago Polytechnic and the wider community.
  • Propose projects aligned with the Foundation's focus areas.
  • Note that course fees and accommodation costs are generally not approved.

Focus Areas

Projects must align with one or more of the following focus areas:

  • Advancement of learning beyond standard experiences.
  • Enhancement of the learning environment or experience.
  • Support for projects aligned with educational excellence for students and staff.
  • Innovation, growth, and development initiatives.
  • Contribution to sustainability.
  • Leadership courses and activities, building personal and professional competency.


Excluded Projects:

  • Projects solely based on financial hardship will not be considered.
  • Routine or standard study occurrences will not be funded.
  • OPEFT will not fund retrospective projects.

General Information

The committee is familiar with Otago Polytechnic policies related to research, ethics, and professional development.

Applicants are encouraged to explore other avenues of financial assistance, such as the Student Assistance Fund.

Conditions of the Grant

  • By accepting funding, recipients agree to provide regular updates and progress reports on funded projects.
  • Recipients must acknowledge the grant as specified by OPEF
  • Recipients may be approached for promotional or alumni activities.
  • Other conditions may be added, and will be advised in a Grant Outcome letter.

Grant Value

  • The Foundation will contribute to all-inclusive travel costs.
  • The maximum grant amount considered is $5,000, with exceptions made in exceptional circumstances.

Application Form Guidelines

  • Applications must be submitted using the provided form.
  • A detailed budget breakdown and other funding sources must be included.
  • Applications should not exceed six pages.
  • Original materials or quotes should not be sent.
  • Single-sided copies are required; do not bind the application.
  • Applications should be submitted at least one funding round before your project occurs.
  • Retrospective projects will not be considered for funding support.

How to Apply

Please email completed applications to

  • If you can’t email your application and reference forms, please deliver them to the Customer Service desk addressed to ‘OPEFT c/o- Anna Mackenzie’ by 5pm on the closing date.
  • Include at least one supporting letter from a lecturer (for students) or manager (for staff).
  • Applications must be submitted by 5pm on the specified quarterly closing date.


By submitting this application, the applicant confirms that all information provided is accurate and agrees to comply with the OPEFT Grant Application Guidelines.


Any queries can be directed to

Funding Round closing dates

  • 31 March, 5pm
  • 31 May, 5pm
  • 31 July, 5pm
  • 30 September, 5pm

Download the application form.

Contact us

If you’re not sure what to study and would like some guidance, we’re here to help. Feel free to chat to us directly about any questions you may have.