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Top young athletes win sport scholarships

Top young athletes win sport scholarships

Thirty talented athletes from the Central North Island tonight received Prime Minister's sporting scholarships to help them reach their sporting and educational goals, Sport and Recreation Minister Trevor Mallard announced today.

Thirty talented athletes from the Central North Island tonight received Prime Minister's sporting scholarships to help them reach their sporting and educational goals, Sport and Recreation Minister Trevor Mallard announced today. The 30 athletes are amongst a group of over 400 nationwide who were offered this year's scholarships, worth up to $16,000 each per annum.

Trevor Mallard presented the scholarships at the New Zealand Academy of Sport Central, in Wellington.

The Prime Minister's Scholarships are a government initiative, administered on its behalf by the New Zealand Academy of Sport, the high performance network of SPARC. They were established in 2000 to help athletes pursue academic or trade studies as well as sporting careers.

"Our government has committed $5 million each year for the programme because we want to support young sportspeople achieving excellence in their field. These scholarships help young athletes who have the potential to become the next generation of New Zealand's outstanding sportspeople," Trevor Mallard said.

Two of New Zealand's most promising hockey players, the Black Sticks' Tara Drysdale and Kayla Sharland, are among today's scholarship recipients. The Black Sticks qualified for the Olympics last week.

"It is important for sportspeople to have balance in their lives. Studying for a tertiary qualification while also training in their sport ensures that other opportunities will exist for them once they retire from their sport."

Trevor Mallard said athletes receiving scholarships will have their full tertiary fees paid, up to $10,000 per annum.

"Athletes may also be entitled to an allowance which is dependent on their study loading. This is a huge help for those who are struggling to make ends meet while juggling their busy lives." Scholarships are available to athletes who are either currently carded by their national sport organisation and accessing services linked to the New Zealand Academy of Sport, or to athletes from non-carded sports who are prioritised by their national sport organisation.

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