Defence industry internship and graduate scholarships open

21 June 2023

Applications are open for the State Government's new Defence Industry Internship and Graduate Scholarships program - designed to boost the uptake of interns and graduates in Western Australia's priority defence industry.
  • Applications open for Defence Industry Internship and Graduate Scholarships
  • Placing 190 interns and 50 graduates in WA's defence industry over three years
  • Skilling professional and para-professional workers for WA's priority defence sector


The scholarships will place 190 interns and 50 graduates in the WA defence industry over the next three years to help ensure a pipeline of skilled professional and para-professional workers.

Eligible qualifications relate to occupations including engineers, project managers, logistics-related personnel, technical officers, commercial management professionals, cyber and ICT professionals, and occupations that support a 'smart' Industry 4.0 defence industry workforce.

The State Government is investing $35 million to directly support the development of a strong and sustainable WA defence workforce.

This includes funding of $4 million for the Defence Industry Internship and Graduate Scholarships Program in the 2022-2023 State Budget as part of an $11 million package to help ensure a pipeline of skilled professional and para-professional workers for the defence sector.

A previous $18 million investment boosted defence industry capabilities and trades workforce.

Eligible graduates and students are encouraged to apply for the scholarships offered under three sub-programs:

  • 'taster' Work Integrated Learning (WIL) program - 6 to 12 week placement for first and second year university and higher-level vocational education and training (VET) students in a defence industry-relevant qualification;
  • internship program - 10 to 26 week placement for university students or higher-level VET students who are normally in their last or second last year of study in a defence industry-related qualification; and
  • graduate program - one year graduate placement for new or previous graduates who have attained a university or higher-level VET defence industry-relevant qualification.

Generous incentives are also available for employers to take on interns and graduates, with a bonus incentive applying to interns and employers where there is participation by women, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, people with disability and regional candidates.

Programmed Training Services has been contracted to administer the scholarship program and will facilitate student and graduate placements.

The program complements other defence industry workforce initiatives of the State Government, including the expanded 'The Other Force' campaign to promote defence industry careers across all defence capability domains of maritime, air, land, space, information and cyber.

More information about the scholarships and training for jobs in WA's defence industry is on the Jobs and Skills WA website or contact your nearest Jobs and Skills Centre on 13 64 64.


Comments attributed to Training Minister Simone McGurk:

"As Western Australia continues to prepare for future defence work, occupations such as engineers, project managers, logistics personnel, technicians, commercial management professionals, and cyber and ICT professionals are becoming increasingly important.

"The new Defence Industry Internship and Graduate Scholarships, along with other initiatives, will expand our Government's current support for the defence trades workforce.

"State Government defence industry workforce initiatives are supported by our Government's 'The Other Force - Start something' campaign, which shines a spotlight on industries that support Australia's Defence Force and encourages Western Australians to 'Start something' with WA's defence industry."


Comments attributed to Defence Industry Minister Paul Papalia:

"The AUKUS agreement and Defence Strategic Review will see Western Australia at the leading edge of future Defence plans.

"Our world-leading defence industry players will be central to this effort and they represent an exciting and enduring career path.

"The Cook Government will continue to offer incentives and support for people looking to begin an exciting career with the Force behind the Force."