Leading Financial Institutions Sponsor NSW's Top Finance Students: Eight of Australia's Major Banks and Leading International Financial Institutions Have Partnered with UNSW in Providing Sponsorships to Launch the New Finance (Honours) UNSW Co-Op Program

Article excerpt

The Co-op Program provides outstanding scholars with the opportunity of undertaking their course work in the Bachelor of Commerce degree with industrial training experience. Co-op scholars receive an annual scholarship paid by sponsoring organisations. By combining the degree with hands-on practical experience, Co-op scholars are provided with an excellent opportunity of furthering their knowledge and skills in partnership with sponsors. The honours (research) component of the School of Banking and Finance's Co-op model is also a central component of preparing future leaders of the financial services industry for exciting careers.

The Finance (Hons) Co-op Program is a four-year degree, which includes three industrial training placements with sponsors (a total of 15 months), as well as an honours year completed in the fourth year. Sponsors pay an annual scholarship of around $14,000 in each of the four years of the program, receiving full-time employment from the scholars for 15 months. While Co-op has existed at UNSW for many years, 2005 saw the introduction of the Finance Program.

The sponsoring companies invited to participate from 2005 are the Commonwealth Bank of Australia, ABN AMRO, Westpac, JP Morgan, UBS, Deutsche Bank, St George Bank, the Sydney Futures Exchange and the Australian Stock Exchange. This leading group of finance firms will provide 13 Co-op scholarships to scholars over the period 2005-08.

Attracting exceptional students and sponsors

The quality of sponsors has been matched by the quality of the students accepting scholarships. Thirteen of the highest-ranking students seeking to study banking and finance have accepted offers: they have a median UAI score of 99.7.

I am delighted with the calibre of the sponsors who are together providing close to $750,000 in support of this new program from 2005. I am also very pleased that such talented and gifted students have accepted these scholarships.

Since 1988 the UNSW Co-op program has offered scholarships in disciplines such as Actuarial Studies, Accounting, Marketing and Information Systems and Management. With the addition of Finance, the program is one of the largest and most successful in the region for talented students completing their HSC.

Associate Professor David Gallagher, Finance (Hons) UNSW Co-op Director in the School of Banking and Finance at UNSW has noted that, 'With the participation of sponsoring firms and academics in the School of Banking and Finance, we have selected exceptional students for 2005 from applications received around the country. …