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SIR EDMUND HILLARY SCHOLARSHIPS

23 November 2004
NZ "icon" Sir Edmund Hillary has agreed that new scholarships can be named after him.

Sir Edmund Hillary has agreed to lend his name to Waikato University’s new Parallel Development Programme (PDP) Scholarships for high-performing all-rounders. They will be known as the Sir Edmund Hillary Scholarships.

“These scholarships are designed to become New Zealand’s equivalent of the prestigious Rhodes Scholarships for multi-talented students destined to become future leaders,” says Vice-Chancellor Bryan Gould. “I am extremely pleased that we will have someone of Sir Edmund’s stature associated with the scholarships.”

Also, on 14 December, the university is due to sign memorandum of understanding with a range of community organisations in the Waikato who will be supporting the PDP by providing training to students.

The scholarships, announced last month, are available to students who are academic high achievers and who also excel at either arts or sports.

The university believes that helping academically able artists and sportspeople to achieve all round excellence will deliver considerable benefits to the students themselves, the university in Hamilton and Tauranga, the Waikato and Bay of Plenty regions in particular, and the country in general. “The more we can do to assist these sorts of young people achieve their best the better for everyone concerned,” says Professor Gould.

Benefits of the new scheme include:
*More top students studying, playing sport and creating art in Hamilton and the satellite campus in Tauranga, with flow on academic, economic, sporting and cultural benefits for the Waikato and Bay of Plenty regions. Scholars can also be expected to contribute in the national and international arenas.
*Better quality research by Waikato University students in the longer-term, important for university funding under the Performance-Based Research Fund system.
*A bigger pool of high-performers available to assist in regional economic, sporting and cultural development upon graduation.
*Students from around the country having access to a significant new scheme supporting all round excellence.

Benefits for scholars include:
*a full-fee scholarship to attend Waikato University.
*personal support from the high performance manager.
*leading coaches in their area of sports excellence or leading tutors in areas of arts excellence.
*participation in elite development squads where applicable.
*participation in club, regional and national competitions.
*free membership of the Uni Rec Centre.
*customised fitness programmes.
*life skills and personal development coaching

School-leavers will be considered for a scholarship if they gain:
*University Entrance, and 60 credits at level 3 or 4 NCEA in no more than 4 approved subjects, with at least 14 credits in each subject, and are NZ or Australian citizens or permanent residents, and
have an established record of excellence in sport and recreation, or in performing and creative arts, and
have proven leadership qualities.

Current university students are eligible to apply if they have a B grade pass average and meet the citizenship, sporting or arts excellence and leadership criteria.

The selection of scholars will be undertaken by the university, with consultation with partner organisations. Partner organisations may also nominate scholars to the university.

To remain in the programme, scholars will be expected to maintain a B grade pass average or better each year and meet a range of other requirements.

Media contact: Stephen Ward, 07 838 4067 or 0274 77 99 41

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