Waterford IT’s new Victory Scholars, Meghan Donohue and Jasmine Walker.
A decade after the launch of their ‘Victory Scholars’ programme, the Sport Changes Life foundation is celebrating another milestone as the next class of Victory Scholars ventures into their new roles, helping to shape the lives of young people across the island of Ireland.
Sport Changes Life’s Victory Scholars Programme consists of students who have excelled in their academics and sport, primarily basketball – and in recent year’ golf – in American Universities during their undergraduate studies. The Scholars then go on to study for postgraduate degrees at universities across the Island of Ireland while putting their extensive knowledge of sport, team building and mentorship to practice in communities across the island. In their time in Ireland the Scholars have not only helped to strengthen the level of basketball being played at a grassroots level, but have also impacted young lives by providing an outlet for confidence building and in many cases steering young people toward positive futures.
Reflecting on the incredible success of Sport Changes Life Victory Scholars Programme, Gareth Maguire, CEO and Co-Founder of Sport Changes Life said, “We are so proud of how far Sport Changes Life Victory Scholar Programmr has come in its first ten years, and truly feel that our tenth year will be the most exciting. This year the inaugural Basketball Hall of Fame Belfast Classic, which will raise funds for Sport Changes Life, will come to Belfast’s SSE Arena, and with the help and support of the Rory Foundation, we have been able to expand our programme to include our 100th Victory Scholar as well as two new Victory Scholar positions in Golf and Tennis in Dubai.”
In addition to their roles as local ambassadors for sport and as team builders and mentors for young people island-wide, this year’s Victory Scholars will also take on a unique role as ambassadors for the upcoming Basketball Hall of Fame Belfast Classic, presented by Sport Changes Life, which will take place 1st and 2nd December 2017 at the Belfast SSE Arena. The two-day basketball will welcome four American universities as they go head-to-head to compete in the first of its kind competitive collegiate basketball tournament outside of America.
Two Victory Scholars have once again made their way to Waterford. They will study at WIT. Meghan Donohue from Ohio played her college basketball with Siena College in New York. Jasmine Walker from New Jersey played and studied at Monmouth University in her home state.
The two young scholars based at WIT will play basketball with WIT Ladies in the new season. They will also play with local superleague club WIT Maxol Waterford Wildcats. They will also undertake one year Master Programmes sponsored by the internationally renowned Waterford Institute of Technology Business Department.
WIT Coach, Jim Dudley, welcomed the two new student players to Waterford IT. “We have only just met but immediately I can see in the girls the determination to succeed that has brought them the success they have had academically and sports wise in their lives so far. I am sure basketball fans in the south east can look forward to seeing these girls grace the new WIT Arena.”