NUI Galway has announced the establishment of a rugby youth academy to cater for teenagers in Galway.
The academy will be part of the existing rugby club at NUIG which was formed in 1874 and is a founder member of the IRFU.
The development of the academy, coupled with the university’s sports scholarship scheme, is aimed at strengthening the college's All Ireland League u-20 squad in the future.
In its first season the academy will cater for u-13 boys only, but it will expand over the next five years up to u-18s. Coaching, mentoring, and administrative resourcing will come from within the existing club and will be augmented by support from the mini rugby club Na Bairneachaí (u-8s to u-12s ) established in the Barna/Knocknacarra area in 2007.
NUIG president Dr James Browne says the youth academy is a good fit for the university’s outreach and community support initiatives.
"It is envisaged this new academy will add greatly to the development of youth rugby in the city and its environs. It will also be of great benefit for the university rugby club into the future.”
Na Bairneachaí president Neil Keaveney says this new venture within NUI Galway builds on the hard work and community involvement in the development of rugby in the west side of Galway city. "Simply put, it is a great opportunity for more kids to play more games in what we hope will be an enjoyable yet competitive setting.”
Open day and registration will take place on Saturday September 3 in Dangan for NUI Galway Youth Academy and Na Bairneachaí. Training for u-13 boys, born in 1999, commences September 17 at 10.30am in Dangan.