The GAA recently unveiled details of a new National Bursaries scheme for students attending Higher Education colleges as part of its ongoing commitment to Player Welfare.
The new scheme will be open to members of the Association who are attending a full-time Higher Education course (except those who hold another GAA-related or college scholarship/bursary) and who are active participants in their Higher Education club.
Such students may often feel the necessity to work during their college years, but these grants will now allow them to work with their College GAA Club in a variety of areas without having to find work outside the college.
Speaking today, the GAAs Player Welfare Manager Paraic Duffy said: "It is envisaged that recipients will be selected on the basis of their playing commitment and administrative or coaching commitment to the college club. 20% of all awards in each province each year will be granted to students excelling in the areas of coaching and administration."
He continued: "While there will be a cap placed on the number of awards granted per college, the number of students involved in hurling and football activity within the college will be taken into account in deciding the number of awards made to an individual college."
It was confirmed that the proposed Bursaries will be administered by the respective Provincial Councils and that applications for the scheme will be considered by a sub-committee in each province, which will include representatives nominated by the Provincial Council and representatives of Comhairle Ard-Oideachais/ Higher Education colleges.
The President of the GAA, Mr Nickey Brennan, described it as an exciting development for the Association and said that in total, the GAA would be investing €260,000 in the scheme in its initial year. He explained that the Provincial Councils would be contributing €155,000 of this amount and that the balance would come from central resources.
He said: "At the beginning of my Presidency, I announced my intention to introduce Player Welfare initiatives that would reconcile with the policies, ethos and structures of the Association. As part of this process, we asked the GAAs Comhairle Ard Oideachais to submit proposals relating to the provision of bursaries to Third Level Colleges. It is in this context that we are in a position to make todays announcement and I am delighted that we are now in a position to assist many of our young GAA players, coaches and administrators in meeting the costs of their 3rd level education."
The President went on to pay tribute to the voluntary work of students with their College GAA Clubs and said that the bursary scheme would assist students, who might otherwise have to work to meet the costs of their education, in devoting more time to the promotion of Gaelic games in their respective colleges.
18-Oct-07 by GAA.ie