FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Your questions answered.

Click here for more information in our Guidelines and Policies

For scholarship application assistance or enquiries email here

For general inquiries here

In order to complete your application, you will need to create an account on the scholarship application page: https://thepinnaclefoundation.submittable.com/submit

Once you have created your account, you can complete your application in one go or you can complete it in parts. The system will automatically save your work as you go so when you want to return to complete the application, just return to your application page and enter in your login credentials and it will return to where you left off. When you complete your application, please ensure that you press Submit.

It is really important to finish the application form and submit it before September 15. If you have a problem with a question, contact us. All discussions will be confidential.

Once you have finished your application, read through it carefully and make sure that you have completed all the questions, before you submit it. Applicants who complete the documentation fully will be considered for short-listing and interview (confidential and held in November).

You must be at least 18 years of age and younger than 27 years of age on 20 January in each year for which the scholarship is sought.

Applicants are evaluated on the whole of their response to the selection criteria including academic achievements; financial and social need; extracurricular activities; personal circumstances, personal resilience and self-determination; as well as goals for their future. Whilst academic results are one part of the selection criteria, we also take into consideration your background and personal circumstances and assess your response holistically.

We are looking for individuals who have the potential to achieve academically and want to use their education to make a difference and be future leaders in the community.

We recommend that you submit your application as soon as applications open (July 2021) as this gives you more time to better prepare your responses, edit your responses when need and make any changes before the application closing time. 

No, a Pinnace Foundation scholarship is not a loan. You will receive a debit card which you can use responsibly according to the terms and conditions and the agreed spending criteria.

It is intended that scholarships are primarily for study related costs such as the following items:

  • technology (inclusive of laptop/PC, printer, storage devices i.e. hard drives/cloud membership, course relevant software, tablet/iPad, laptop/tablet cables and charging devices, keyboard, mouse, stylus/electronic pencil)
  • the cost of uniforms, clothing and/or shoes associated with the education/vocation being undertaken
  • the cost of textbooks and online related services
  • the cost of fees or dues to an approved educational institution
  • student union and professional association fees
  • professional equipment, memberships or tools of trade associated with the education or vocation being sought
  • public transport student concession passes
  • additional travel and accommodation costs associated with vocational placements, internships and volunteering which is undertaken as a requirement of an Australian based educational or training course and where the scholar is not entitled to be paid any remuneration
  • a contribution towards the costs of attending an overseas educational course
  • cost of fees associated with tuition to address a learning disability
  • relevant (to their academic studies and career) registration costs associated with attendance to domestic conferences or forums.

Other scholarship expenses must relate to the wellbeing of the scholar.

Items such as living expenses, medical, optical and dental treatment, medication and optical expenses are all acceptable.

The Pinnacle Foundation will contact you by email early November if you are selected for a video call interview which will take place during month of November. Successful candidates will be notified by phone in December once reference checks have been conducted and the scholarship and accompanying mentorship will be confirmed after you submit the details of your tertiary placement offer to us.

The Pinnacle Foundation assigns a mentor to each scholar. Your mentor will typically share the same academic and professional interests, gender identity and sexual orientation and be located near to where you are living. The mentor is there to provide advice and support to you throughout your scholarship.

The role of a mentor

The main role of a mentor is to be a “sounding board” and provide guidance on academic and related issues to a scholar. Communication is key to being a successful mentor (and a successful scholar). A mentor is there to help their scholar navigate the everyday challenges of long-term studies, society and the community by drawing on their greater knowledge and experience, and their genuine concern for young people.

A mentor’s role includes:

  • Offering support, encouragement, optimism and hope
  • Offering guidance and realistic advice as requested
  • Assisting with goal-setting; suggesting possible courses of action, and support in making choices
  • Helping the scholar to identify their strengths and thereby strengthen their self-esteem
  • Being “a sounding-board” for ideas and problems
  • Helping them develop their skills and knowledge in their area of study
  • Offering a consistent, non-judgmental relationship
  • Where appropriate introducing them to their work environment, and engaging in some social and recreational activities with the scholar; and
  • Helping the scholar deal with any sense of alienation and loneliness.

Yes, you must be able to demonstrate that because of your gender identity, sexual orientation or sexual characteristics you have been prevented or hindered from achieving your academic aspirations. You should also have a history of participating / or capacity to participate in the LGBTIQ+ community or be able to demonstrate that you plan to be an LGBTIQ+ leader in the future.

No. Applications close September 15 and short-listed candidates are identified soon after.

Eligible applications are assessed by local state and territory selection committees. The national selection committee reviews their recommendations and determines those to be invited for interview. Assessments are made in accord with the criteria detailed below:

Eligibility criteria:

An eligible candidate is someone who meets all of the following requirements:

  • Australian citizen or permanent resident (proof required during application stage)
  • At least 18 years of age and younger than 27 years of age on 20 January in each year for which the scholarship is sought
  • Have achieved good or reasonable scholastic results given your circumstances
  • Will be undertaking full-time studies
  • Identify as a member of the LGBTIQ+ community.

Selection criteria:

  • Have faced and attempted to overcome challenges because of their gender identity and/or sexual orientation and/or sexual characteristics
  • Has personal or social circumstances which may hinder completion of their education. Personal and social circumstances may include whether the applicant is first in family to attend a tertiary institution, identifies as being from Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander descent, are from a non-English speaking background, has been in foster care, has been homeless, or was raised or lived in a regional, rural or remote area of Australia
  • Can demonstrate sufficient motivation to complete a course or the remaining years of a course (as the case may be) of full-time study and demonstrates understanding of the rigors of academic life
  • Is clear about where their studies may take their career; and
  • Is proud to be a part of a diverse Australian community, including with respect to gender identity, sexual orientation and sexual characteristics.

The application process is open only to Australian citizens and those with permanent resident status. We require proof of residency and citizenship from all our applicants.

Every year there is strong competition for our scholarships. Make sure you have read the questions carefully and consider your responses. Make sure you answer every question to the best of your abilities, and you will have every chance.

Scholars receive between $5,000 and $7,000 in their first year of study as a Pinnacle scholar and between $4,000 and $5,000 in subsequent years. Subject to continuing to meet our requirements, Pinnacle Foundation scholarships are multi-year and designed to support you to complete your qualification.

A Pinnacle Foundation scholarship covers a variety of expenses including (but not limited to) tuition fees where HECS is not available. The scholarship also covers other educational expenses including the cost of textbooks, professional memberships or student union fees, professional tools of trade, uniform, laptop computer, printer expenses, public transport, and cost of living expenses including rent.

Scholarships are awarded for fulltime study at public higher education institutions in Australia to achieve educational or vocational qualifications in any profession, trade or the arts.

Pinnacle scholars are required to:

Uphold The Pinnacle Foundation’s values:

  • Embrace learning – creating opportunities, new horizons and joy through learning
  • Sense of belonging – supporting each other, being part of a community, showing gratitude and having fun
  • Will to transform – changing lives by having a go, challenging boundaries, being courageous and celebrating success.

And:

  • Maintain a meaningful mentor-scholar relationship, always adhering to the undertakings contained in the Mentor Guidelines
  • Share any significant life changes, areas of concern and academic issues that may impact upon your financial or academic position, openly communicating and always asking for permission first, rather than forgiveness later
  • Respond promptly to all Pinnacle communication and meet requested deadlines
  • Complete ten hours of community service per annum to the satisfaction of your mentor (Community service may include volunteering with on-campus LGBTIQ+ groups.)
  • Be actively involved in the Pinnacle family and constructively engage with your local state or territory committee
  • Respect and treat other members of the Pinnacle family and LGBTIQ+ community equally despite difference
  • Strive for academic excellence and maintain a satisfactory level of fulltime academic achievement (reviewed bi-annually)
  • Embrace the scholarship, mentoring and opportunities that arise to shape our community today and tomorrow
  • Spend your scholarship funds strictly in accordance with the Scholar Debit Card Conditions of Use, maintaining receipts for all expenditure.

Yes, you may re-apply subject to you continuing to meet the eligibility requirements.

No. You need to submit a new form. Not only do we refine our application form each year to make the process more efficient and informative for applicants and the Selection Committee, but your circumstances will also have changed.

For the upcoming year, an application form and instructions can be found on this site here.

Scholarship applications open in July for study in the following academic year (i.e. apply between 1 July  and 15 September 2021 for 2022 study).

The Pinnacle Foundation is committed to protecting your personal information. The Pinnacle Foundation is bound by the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth), which sets out a number of principles concerning the privacy of individuals. Your application will be reviewed by Pinnacle Foundation assessors involved in the selection process and by relevant members of the management team. Information is kept securely. Please see our Privacy Policy for more details.