Selection Process

This page outlines the selection process and key timeframes for Churchill Fellowship applications.


2024 Application timeline

Information sessions
1 March
Applications open
1 May
Applications close
May – June
Selection panels review applications and shortlist for interviews
May – July
Interviews held in each state/territory
July – August
Applicants advised if they are progressing to the next stage
Final selections made by Board. New Fellows advised and announced.
24 – 25 October
New Fellows Onboarding Event (mandatory session in Canberra)
1 November 2024
Fellowship travel can commence*

*The travelling period is from 1 November 2024 to 31 January 2026. If you would like to travel between 1 November 2024 to 31 January 2025 (the first three months), please have your itinerary and meeting arrangements submitted in writing, 5 weeks prior to your planned departure.

Step 1: Planning and writing your application

You can start thinking about and planning your application before applications open. Think carefully about the topic you would like to explore, why you need to travel overseas and what benefit your Fellowship would bring to Australia.

Early in your planning process, think about who you will ask to be your referees. You will need one personal and one professional referee willing to fill out an online reference form.

Think about what your ‘pitch’ will be, and of course which countries you would like to visit and learn from. You should keep your writing as succinct as possible. There will be a word limit for your answers in the online form – more information is below on this.

You are required to submit a 1 minute ‘video pitch’ within the application form making a clear case for why your proposed project is important, why you need to travel overseas, the benefit to the community that could come from your Fellowship and why you are the right person to do it. This will be used to assist selectors in assessing your application.

Applications will only be accepted via our online form which opens here on our website on 1 March and closes 1 May.

Important: when you complete your online application you should use one email address only that you will have ongoing access to throughout 2024.

If you need adjustments made for accessibility reasons please contact us.

Once you submit your completed application online, you will receive an official acknowledgment email. Check your spam or junk email folder in case you miss this email.

Application assessment

Your application will be assessed by our selection panels and/or committees. If your Fellowship application was unsuccessful, we encourage you to read through the following advice.

There are two important aspects of your application that are considered by assessors. Firstly, in relation to your project:

  • the need for your project in Australia at either a community, state/territory or national level
  • the benefits to Australia at all levels
  • the itinerary and places you have selected
  • the necessity for your to travel overseas
  • the achievability of your project

Secondly, in relation to you personally:

  • your ability to maximise the benefit of the Fellowship opportunity (your current standing and experience in the field, and your skills and/or expertise)
  • your commitment to make a difference after you complete your Fellowship, such as ongoing involvement in the field, leadership qualities, a strategic approach and networks that your have identified
  • your plans to share your Fellowship knowledge and expertise, and widely disseminate findings.

Step 2: Interview(s)

If you are short-listed for an interview, you will be contacted by one of the Trusts’ Regional Secretaries to arrange an interview time. Interviews will be scheduled between May and July – the exact timing, duration, and the number of interviews vary in each state and territory. You may be required to attend two interviews.

Interviews are typically held in-person in the capital city of the state or territory where you live. if attending an interview in person presents difficulties, please contact your Regional Secretary to discuss your situation as support or reasonable adjustment can be provided.

If you miss an interview we are unable to consider you for the current application round.

Step 3: Final selection

In September, the final selection is determined by the Board of the Churchill Trust.

All applicants are notified of the outcome and successful applicants are announced publicly. Successful applicants should be prepared for potential media coverage and be available for interviews to capitalise on the announcement of their Fellowship. More details and supporting information regarding media liaison will be provided to all successful applicants.

Unsuccessful applicants

Selection for the Churchill Fellowship award is a competitive process with a strong field of applicants. We have many Fellows who were not successful until their second or third application. We encourage unsuccessful applicants to read through the following advice to refine their projects and apply again in the next application round.

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