Eleven University of Canberra (UC) students who are also elite athletes have each received a $10,000 scholarship to help them balance their academic and sporting commitments.
The 2020 Eldon and Anne Foote Athlete Scholarship has been awarded to 11 athletes, many of whom were Tokyo-bound Olympians, across multiple sports, including rugby union, basketball and tennis.
UC Capitals player, Australian representative and Bachelor of Physiotherapy student, Keely Froling, said she will benefit greatly from the scholarship.
“Studying and being a professional athlete can definitely have its challenges, especially when we’re travelling a lot,” she said.
“As a female athlete especially, we don’t earn a lot of money, so I’ve always had to have part-time jobs.
“There’s only so many hours in the day to work, study and train, so this scholarship makes it easier to find a balance in life.”
The number of scholarships awarded in 2020 was increased to account for changes in training schedules and competition timelines to ensure athletes are supported.
UC Director or Sport, Carrie Graf, said the scholarships demonstrated the University’s commitment to its athletes.
“At UC, we aim to do everything possible to ensure our elite athlete student cohort is supported,” she said.
“This scholarship means these students are able to achieve the balance needed to thrive academically and athletically.”
Canberra Brumbies player and Bachelor of Sport Exercise Science and Sports Management student, Harrison Lloyd, who is also a recipient, said the scholarship would help to take some pressure off him.
“Over the last few years, it’s been difficult to find a balance between playing rugby and studying,” he said.
“Receiving the scholarship has taken a bit of the pressure off – particularly with COVID-19, money has been tight for a lot of people – it is less of an issue to have to find work externally, and allows me to focus on both rugby and my studies.”
The scholarships are awarded in conjunction with the University’s Elite Athlete Program.
Here is the full list of Eldon and Anne Foote Elite Athlete Scholarship recipients:
Harrison Lloyd – Rugby Union, Brumbies
Keely Froling – Basketball, UC Capitals and Australia 3v3
Keely Small – Athletics (800m), Athletics Australia
Claudia Obst – Rugby Union, UC7s, Brumbies (Super W)
Jessica Bell – Athletics (Javelin), Athletics Australia
Mikaela Stevens – Volleyball, Volleyball Australia
Alison Bai – Tennis, Tennis Australia
Ari Gesini – Athletics (Long Jump), Paralympics Australia
Joshua White – Softball, Softball Australia
Kate Eckhardt – Canoe Slalom, Paddle Australia
Freya Brent – Handball, Handball Australia