Scholars commencing studies in Australia in 2024

Twenty-one scholars from Nepal received Australia Awards Scholarships to start their studies in Australia in 2024.

Each of these scholars is profiled below. (All information is current as of 1 January 2024.)


Arjun Kumar Chaudhary has been working as an Audit Officer at the Government of Nepal’s Office of the Auditor General of Nepal since 2018. He plays a pivotal role in investigating financial irregularities and promoting financial accountability within government organisations. Arjun’s passion lies in economics, and he is committed to supporting Nepal’s economic development with effective public audit mechanisms.

With his Australia Awards Scholarship, Arjun aims to build his expertise in revenue administration and establish a specialised unit at the Office of the Auditor General to combat revenue leakages through efficient customs and tax regulations, which will ultimately contribute to a more robust and sustainable Nepali economy.

Deepika Thapa Magar is a Section Officer under the Nepal Judicial Service, currently working at the Kathmandu District Court. She is primarily responsible for drafting court orders and judgements and supervising a case unit.

Through her Australia Awards Scholarship, Deepika aims to learn innovative courtroom technologies and practices to enhance efficiency and accessibility in court procedures. She is committed to leveraging her knowledge to contribute to the judiciary of Nepal by modernising legal practices and promoting competent and accessible courts. She aspires to work towards removing barriers to justice and increasing the public credibility of courts in Nepal.

Gyanu BK is a teacher at DAV Sushil Kedia Vishwa Bharati School, Kathmandu. As a teacher, she ensures that every student participates in the learning process by creating accessible classrooms using a variety of instructional formats. She also contributes to creating an inclusive classroom environment.

With her Australia Awards Scholarship, Gyanu hopes to enhance her technical capabilities and gain knowledge about integrated learning systems in inclusive education. She plans to contribute to Nepal’s education sector, focusing especially on access to education.

Kabin Maharjan, a development researcher with over a decade of experience in climate change, land and migration, is committed to solving national and global environmental problems. Currently, he serves as a Research and Learning Adviser at United Mission to Nepal and also holds a Visiting Faculty position at the School of Arts, Kathmandu University. Kabin actively generates user-focused evidence, contributing to informed decision-making in policy and development initiatives.

Kabin aims to leverage his Australia Awards Scholarship to deepen his knowledge in climate science, policy and practices, helping him contribute innovative solutions to Nepal’s climate change adaptation and disaster risk mitigation, while also fostering meaningful climate discourse. Through his teaching career, he hopes to cultivate a climate-sensitive new generation. He also seeks to represent Nepal at global forums in advocating climate justice and minimising the country’s vulnerability to the effects of climate change.

Kamana Adhikari is an agriculture professional, currently serving as the Chief of the Agriculture Knowledge Center in Palpa.

Through her Australia Awards Scholarship, Kamana hopes to enhance her technical skills and accumulate learning experiences to strengthen her capacity in agribusiness management and support the Government of Nepal in its efforts to develop and implement agribusiness development policies and strategies.

Lokendra Adhikari is a Conservation Officer at the Department of National Parks and Wildlife Conservation. He has nine years of experience in wildlife conservation and protected areas management. He is also a member of the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s Species Survival Commission – Asian Rhino Specialist Group. His role is to support national park offices in planning, designing and implementing programs related to biodiversity conservation.

With his Australia Awards Scholarship, Lokendra hopes to enrich his knowledge and technical skills in ecosystem management and biodiversity conservation, as well as contribute to achieving Nepal’s national climate action goals.

Mahima Bajracharya has worked for more than eight years in the public service and is currently a Horticulture Development Officer for the Government of Nepal’s Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Development. She is involved in preparing drafts of working procedures and manuals in the ministry, which are the guiding documents for implementing the government’s plans and programs.

With her Australia Awards Scholarship, Mahima hopes to enhance her technical skills and practical knowledge in urban horticulture. She also aspires to build linkages with horticultural industries in Australia and explore potential partnership opportunities for horticulture development in urban and peri-urban areas of Nepal. She aims to contribute to sustainable urban food production by building leadership to promote urban farming methods.

Manil Raj Maharjan is a psychologist at the Mental Hospital, Lagankhel, for its 1166 National Suicide Prevention Helpline service. He has worked for three years in mental health and psychosocial services.

Manil provides in-person counselling sessions to people with suicidal thoughts and behaviours, leads a team of counsellors and interns to organise public awareness campaigns for suicide prevention, and trains and supervises college students as helpline volunteers. Previously, he served as a teacher at a rural community school under a Teach for Nepal fellowship where he taught English to underprivileged secondary level students.

Following his Australia Awards Scholarship, Manil plans to contribute to improving the mental health of people with disability in Nepal. By associating with a disability-rights organisation, he envisions working directly with students with disability to promote their psychosocial wellbeing and workplace rehabilitation.

Manju Gurung is a Civil Engineer. She has been working for the Government of Nepal’s Department of Local Infrastructure for more than a decade. She has extensively contributed to the rural road construction in the hilly areas of Nepal.

With her Australia Awards Scholarship, Manju wants to enhance her technical knowledge to build safe and sustainable roads in Nepal and provide advisory support to her department.

Padma Pokhrel is a Crop Development Officer with the Government of Nepal’s Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Development. She has approximately a decade of experience in the field of agricultural development.

With her Australia Awards Scholarship, Padma hopes to enhance her technical and theoretical capabilities in agribusiness and value chain management to support Nepali farmers in value addition and commercial production.

Prakriti Budha Magar is a law and development professional with over five years of experience in the social justice and human rights sector. Currently, she works with Green Law Associates as a lawyer and a legal adviser at Jhumlawang Village Foundation. Her major work comprises socio-legal research, legal drafting, counselling, representation at various courts of Nepal and providing legal aid to ensure access to justice. She is also a gender equality and social inclusion focal person and advocates for the rights of women, children and marginalised communities.

With her Australia Awards Scholarship, Prakriti seeks to build expertise on addressing human rights challenges and development issues to amplify future human rights and social justice endeavours in Nepal.

Prativa Khanal is an agricultural professional with more than seven years of experience in agriculture extension and horticulture sector development. She is working as an Agriculture Extension Officer at the National Center for Potato, Vegetable and Spice Crops Development under the Department of Agriculture.

With her Australia Awards Scholarship, Prativa hopes to enhance her skills and technical expertise in urban agro-farm management. She aims to develop sustainable horticulture development approaches and tools for Nepal.

Ram Pukar Mahara, a Program Coordinator at Samata Foundation, has worked for a decade in human rights advocacy and climate change. His expertise includes youth mobilisation, sustainable social and governance programs, skills development, livelihood generation, and advocacy. He engages in grassroots initiatives to address pressing issues related to environmental sustainability and social equity. His focus lies in championing climate justice and advocating for the rights of marginalised communities.

With his Australia Awards Scholarship, Ram Pukar hopes to enhance his technical skills and knowledge on environmental management and sustainability to support both government and non-governmental entities to manage larger projects in Nepal.

After the Scholarship, Ram Pukar aims to contribute to Nepal’s development by generating evidence through research. Additionally, he looks forward to establishing an institution dedicated to empowering people to create a just society.

Ranjana Bishwakarma is a Bench Assistant at the Supreme Court of Nepal with six years of experience. Her major responsibilities are drafting verdicts, court orders and other legal documents; supporting court proceedings; legal research and analysis; and communication.

Additionally, she writes on socio-legal issues such as representation, judicial activism and gender justice. She has been featured in mainstream Nepali media to discuss these topics.

Through her Australia Awards Scholarship, she plans to deepen her understanding in international law, with the aim of being able to contribute constructively to Nepal’s legal landscape. She also aspires to a career as a judge in the future.

Roshna Dewan has been working with the Government of Nepal for nearly a decade. She has dealt with policy formulation and implementation in different fields, including immigration and refugee management.

With her Australia Awards Scholarship, Roshna plans to develop a sound understanding of public policy, its nuances and its efficacies, so as to be able to play an instrumental role in Nepal’s sustainable and inclusive development.

Sarina Regmi is an official at the International Law and Treaty Division of the Ministry of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs of Nepal. She has experience in drafting, providing legal opinions on bilateral and multilateral agreements, and negotiating international agreements with different development partners.

With her Australia Awards Scholarship, Sarina looks forward to enhancing her expertise in the field of international law and developing essential skills for tackling complex national and international legal challenges.

Sharmila Karki is a Section Officer in the civil service of Nepal. She has worked in the National Planning Commission; the Ministry of Labour, Employment and Social Security; and the Office of the District Coordination Committee in Rasuwa. During her tenure in different institutions, she has accumulated a decade’s experience in sectoral policy formulation, planning, implementation, supervision, and monitoring and evaluation of government programs.

With her Australia Awards Scholarship, Sharmila plans to enhance her knowledge and skills in evidence-based public policy-making, with an emphasis on women and marginalised people.

Sujan Dhungel is a Senior Agriculture Officer serving the Government of Nepal. He has more than 14 years of experience in agriculture commercialisation and food security. He is actively engaged in building the capacity of agri-entrepreneurs and promoting productive partnerships between rural producers and buyers to establish sustainable market linkages.

With his Australia Awards Scholarship, Sujan hopes to advance his research skills and knowledge, with a focus on indigenous crops and their agricultural value chain development.

Sujita Dhakal is an experienced forester specialising in gender equality, disability and social inclusion (GEDSI), climate change and wildlife. Currently, she serves as the Forestry and Biodiversity Expert at Resources Lab. In this role, she undertakes diverse research and projects.

Through her Australia Awards Scholarship, Sujita aims to expand her technical expertise and knowledge in GEDSI within natural resources management. She aspires to spearhead a paradigm shift in Nepal’s natural resource management landscape, placing GEDSI at its core.

Sunil Adhikari is a Senior Divisional Engineer in the Madhesh Province Government. During his seven years as a civil service official, he has contributed to planning, implementation and management of several infrastructure development projects in Nepal.

Through his Australia Awards Scholarship, Sunil aspires to strengthen his technical ability in urban planning, enabling him to encourage planned infrastructure development that can ultimately result in building green, resilient and inclusive cities in Nepal.

Unique Lohani has been serving as a Section Officer at Nepal’s Judicial Service for over five years. During her career, she has also worked as a Judicial Law Clerk (Bench Officer) to Dr Justice Manoj K Sharma of the Supreme Court of Nepal, and as a Bench Officer and Section Supervisor at Lalitpur District Court. Prior to joining the Civil Service, she was an Advocate in the Supreme Court of Nepal.

Unique is keen on the intersections of environment and socio-legal justice. Through the experiences that her Australia Awards Scholarship offers, Unique aspires to deepen her roots and broaden her horizons in international, environmental and constitutional laws, to support her to make meaningful contributions to global environmental justice.