Summer Vacation Studentships

Applications open August 2023 

Cancer Council is the largest not-for-profit funder of cancer research in Victoria. Every year, we spend approximately $20 million on world-class cancer research projects.

We are offering studentships to undergraduate students to work on Victorian cancer research projects during summer vacation to stimulate interest in cancer research in Victoria.  


Undergraduate students enrolled in relevant disciplines, at any Victorian university, that have not yet completed their final year are eligible to apply.

Students are not eligible after completing their final year, except for 3rd year science students who are proceeding to the fourth year of an honours degree. Overseas students are eligible to apply, but must have a student visa that allows limited work to be undertaken.

Applicants cannot apply for a student placement in a laboratory or unit where they have previously held a studentship.

Applicants may submit one application for consideration per round (year).

None of the listed investigators receives or is seeking funding, or other assistance or benefit from the tobacco industry or any of its agencies or subsidiaries. 

Length of studentship

The period of tenure is up to a maximum of six weeks during the summer vacation.

Number of studentships

Approximately 16 studentships are available. No more than two studentships will be funded in any one laboratory or unit.

Available funding

The 2023 available funding is currently being determined

A class ruling has been obtained in relation to the income tax status of the Studentships. Provided various conditions are met, our studentships are exempt from income tax. The Australian Taxation Office class ruling is No. CR 2002/4 effective from 1 December 2001. It is available in full on the Australian Taxation Office website.

Finding a placement

Step 1: Find a research project

Students must first find a placement and then apply for a Cancer Council Victoria Summer Vacation Studentship. Placements need to be part of a cancer research project being conducted at a Victorian university, clinical or other research institution. The research program does not have to be funded by Cancer Council Victoria. However, if you do wish to complete a placement with a research project currently funded research by us, please visit our Grant-in-Aid page. 

Clinical and allied health research placements are also encouraged. Your university department or faculty office, or the Office for Research, may have suggestions of organisations where cancer research is currently being carried out.

Step 2: Contact a researcher

Once you find a research project you are interested in, you need to contact the cancer researcher and ask if they have a project available for you to work on that they would be willing to supervise.

The application form provides for both a description of the work to be done and a written acceptance by the supervisor. Before completing the description of the work proposed to be undertaken, you should consult with the person who will supervise the work to ensure you have a good understanding of the project.

Application process

Simply fill in the application form and forward to the person who has agreed to supervise you for this project, as well as the Research Administration Officer for their signed approval.

If electronic signatures are not available, print the completed application form and get physical signatures, then scan the document for submission.

You will also be required to include a copy of the official statement of your full university results. If you have not yet received this semester/year’s results, please provide your most recent ones.

Once the application form is completed and signed by all parties please submit your application, with a copy of your full university results to:

Deadline:    2023 to be confirmed  

Format:       A PDF document, named in the following format:

                       E.g., SVS2022_Smith-J_App.pdf

Selection criteria

Applications are judged on the applicant’s academic record and value of the research project. 

Successful applicants

Applicants will be notified by email in either late October or early November of the success of their application.
This year, successful applicants and their administering institutions, are required to enter into a non-negotiable funding agreement.

Please note, the previous Funding Agreement available on this page is now being amended. The amended agreement will be provided to Research Institutions, Research Administration Officer for review by the end of October 2023. 

Post-studentship report

Successful applicants are required to write a short report after their placement covering the work carried out and the experience gained from the studentship.

Frequently asked questions and answers

Does the research project I select need to be funded by Cancer Council Victoria? 
No, the project can be from any Victorian University, clinical or other research institution. 


If you have any questions, please contact:   

Research Governance Unit
03 9514 6200