Six inter-county players in total were awarded scholarships on this year’s DCU Business School Masters Scholarship Programme, formally announced at a function in DCU earlier today.

The recipients included Dublin ladies; footballer Leah Caffrey, fresh from All-Ireland senior success last month. Leah becomes the second WGPA scholarship recipient, following Meaths Niamh Lister in 2015. Leah’s scholarship is jointly funded by DCU Business School and Women’s GPA and she will undertake an MSc in Business Management.

The six inter-county players being awarded scholarships will bring to 31 the total of GPA/WGPA members who have benefited from the scholarship programme over the last eight years. Mayo veteran Barry Moran and Down footballer Conor McGinn are the latest inter-county players to be awarded scholarships for the prestigious DCU Business School MBA.

The pair follow in the footsteps of recent DCU Business School/GPA MBA scholarship recipients like Fermanagh’s Chris Breen, Leitrim’s Rob Lowe, Westmeath’s David O’Shaughnessy and Dublin duo Coman Goggins and Barry Cahill.

As well as the two MBA scholarship recipients, four other inter-county players were also recognised with Dublin hurler Cian Boland (MSc Digital Marketing), Waterford dual player Donal Breathnach and Sligo footballer Cian Breheny, both MSc Business Management, all awarded Masters scholarships.

Other notable graduates include Roscommon’s Tadhg Lowe, Leitrim’s Donal Wrynn, Kilkenny hurling star Richie Hogan, Dublin’s Denis Bastick and James McCarthy and former All-Ireland winners Jason Sherlock (Dublin) and Justin McNulty (Armagh).

Its teaching, learning and research activities are strongly influenced by the core guiding principles of relevance and excellence. Its programme portfolio is continually updated and expanded, and recent years have seen the introduction of a number of highly innovative programmes at Bachelor, Masters and Doctorate levels.

The Dean of DCU Business School Professor Anne Sinnott commented “we are delighted to welcome our 8th intake of DCU Business School/GPA scholars and particularly to welcome our second WGPA player to DCU Business School. We are very pleased to continue our relationship with the GPA and the WGPA for 2017/2018. Many of our previous scholarship recipients have achieved great success in their programmes, their careers and on the playing field and we are very proud of them. The GPA/WPA scholars join our world-class programmes along with students from around the world and will no doubt contribute enormously to these programmes. We wish them every success in their studies.” Speaking about the announcement, GPA Chief Executive Dermot Earley said: “Well done to all the scholarship recipients who have now commenced their various Masters Programmes in DCU Business School this year. The GPA’s mission is to help players thrive on and off the pitch and these scholarships provide life-changing opportunities for our inter-county players.

“Excellent programmes such as those offered by DCU Business School benefit the personal development of inter-county players immensely and help to broaden their career opportunities. It is very satisfying that we are now celebrating the eighth intake under the joint scholarship scheme and I would like to wish all the scholars the very best with their studies over the next 12 to 24 months.”

Chairperson of the WGPA, Aoife Lane added: “We are delighted to partner once again with the DCU Business School. DCU is a wonderful supporter of ladies football and camogie players, and recognises the need to support these players in their academic endeavours. This scholarship shows their commitment to furthering the opportunities available for elite female athletes in Gaelic games, and adds to the WGPA education support programme that is available to all members. We are hugely thankful to DCU Business School for their support and wish Leah well in her studies.”