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Top athletes awarded scholarships

Top athletes awarded scholarships

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Eighty-seven talented athletes from the central North Island have been awarded Prime Minister's Athlete Scholarships to help them reach their sporting and educational goals, Minister for Sport and Recreation Trevor Mallard announced today.

The 87 athletes are part of a group of over 580 nationwide who were offered scholarships this year.

Trevor Mallard presented some of the scholarships at the New Zealand Academy of Sport in Wellington tonight.

"These scholarships help relieve some of the pressure on athletes who struggle to achieve challenging sporting and academic goals at the same time," Trevor Mallard said.

"Training to be a high performance athlete is relentless. Studying towards a tertiary qualification can provide release from the rigours of training as well as open doors to other career paths once you leave sport."

The Prime Minister's Scholarships are a government initiative established in 2000 to help athletes pursue academic or trade studies as well as sporting careers. The scholarships are administered by Sport and Recreation New Zealand (SPARC) through their high performance network, the New Zealand Academy of Sport.

Today's scholarship recipients include captain of the New Zealand Under 19 Rugby Union team Victor Vito. Victor also captains the Wellington Under 19 team and was part of the New Zealand Rugby Sevens squad in 2005. Victor is currently studying a Bachelor of Arts and Law at Victoria University. His goal is to become an All Black by 2008.

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

Scholarships are available to athletes who are 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.

ENDS

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