Sport Scholarships | Sports Development Service

Sport Scholarships

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DCU supports the holistic development of talented athletes and recognises their increasing need to successfully balance both academic and sporting commitments. DCU facilitates this vision through the Sports Scholarship Programme.  The Sport Scholarship programme is an athlete led development programme whereby a network of support services and expertise are tailored to the individual needs of the athlete. The programme grades support depending on the athlete's achievement, potential and need, with the objective of remaining flexible to support the diverse needs of the athlete. 

Sport Scholarships were first introduced in DCU in 1996 in the form of GAA sport scholarships. In recent years the programme has expanded greatly and students have been awarded sport scholarships in Athletics, Basketball, Boxing, Camogie, Canoe, Gaelic Football, Golf, Handball, Hockey, Hurling, Rugby, Rowing, Sailing, Soccer and Tennis. DCU is also committed to the development of sporting excellence amongst students with a disability. 

The DCU Sports Scholarship programme offers a wide range of support services for talented athletes as part of a balanced approach to training, performance and academic excellence. The programme is athlete led and grades support depending on the athlete's achievement, potential and need, with the objective of remaining flexible to support the diverse needs of athletes.

The benefits of a DCU Sports Scholarship award may include:      
Financial subsidy 
Membership to the DCU Sports Complex
High-Performance Education Talks and Workshops
Academic support
Lifestyle Support
Sports Science Supports
Goal Setting and Performance Planning
Career Guidance Support
Access to National & International competition


Please note support services are dependent on the grade of scholarship awarded and may be paid in full or subsidised. 

Sport Scholarships are offered to eligible students that have met the DCU admission requirements through the CAO system and are enrolled on a programme of academic study at DCU. The offer of a Sport Scholarship award does not include a reduction in points or the offer of an academic place at DCU. Performance athletes that wish to be considered a reduction in entry criteria will need to apply for the CAO Points Concession Programme. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are the answers to the commonly asked questions about the CAO Points Concession and Sport Scholarships.

What is the difference between the CAO Points Concession and Sport Scholarships?

CAO Points Concession is an academic entry scheme for performance athletes at undergraduate level. A number of academic places offering a CAO points concession are reserved for outstanding candidates who have achieved a very high level of sporting performance and who are committed to continuing to develop their sporting and academic careers.  Successful applicants who have presented all relevant entry requirements and met the sports assessment criteria may be eligible for a points reduction of up to 25 points below the CAO points cut-off for the programme they have applied for. To be considered for this entry scheme, applicants must achieve a minimum of 300 points.

Sport Scholarships is a post-entry support programme that gives a student a number of benefits to assist them to successfully manage their sporting and academic commitments.  Sports Scholarships are intended for persons of outstanding sporting ability.

How can I apply?
Applications are by an online application form available here.  Applications for programmes for the 2021-2022 academic year will open on the 1st of February 2021 and the closing date for receipt of applications is the 1st of May 2021 at 5.15pm. There is one application form for CAO Points Concession and Sport Scholarships.  Upon application, you will need to indicate if you wish to be considered for one or both of these programmes.   Please note the CAO Points Concession and Sport Scholarships are separate programmes.  If you choose to apply for both programmes your application will be assessed separately and you will be notified of the outcome in each programme separately. 

Can I apply for both the CAO Points Concession and Sport Scholarships?
Yes, you can apply for both the CAO Points Concession and Sport Scholarships and you may be successful in one, both or neither.  Please note the CAO Points Concession programme is for students applying to enter 1st year of an undergraduate programme in DCU.

What sports are considered?
We accept applications in our priority sports of Athletics, Basketball, GAA Sports, Soccer and Rugby.  We also consider applications in other sports from athletes of a Junior or Senior International standard, with participation at European/World Championship or Olympic level and part of a high-performance squad with their NGB.   We consider applications in other sports in which there is a respective DCU Sports Club and discipline in DCU.  For a list of DCU Sports Clubs visit www.dcuclubsandsocs.ie. For more information see the section 'What Sports are considered'.

Can I apply in more than one sport?
You can make an application in more than one sport.  You only need to submit one application and detail the information for all your sports.  Please note Sport Scholarships are only offered in one sport and students are expected to commit to the respective DCU Sports Club in which their Sport Scholarship is offered.

Can I edit my application or submit additional information after it has been submitted?
You cannot edit or change your application nor do we accept additional information after your application has been submitted. 

I have missed the application deadline can I still apply?
The deadline for receipt of online applications for CAO Points Concession and Sport Scholarships for the 2021-2022 academic year is the 1st of May 2021 at 5.15pm.  Late applications past the deadline will not be accepted.  Sport Scholarships are offered on an annual basis so if you did miss the deadline you can apply each year that you are a student in DCU.

What should I include in the information in support of my application?
The personal statement is an opportunity or you to make your application stand out and to add any other information that you feel will support your application such as your academic aims, how a DCU Sport Scholarship would benefit you and how you will impact sport in DCU.

Who should I list as a referee?
You need to provide the contact details for two referees.  One referee should be from your National Governing Body of Sport and the second referee should be from your Coach, Manager or Teacher. For GAA applicants one referee should be from your Intercounty Manager or County Board, and the second referee should be from your Coach, Manager or Teacher, Please note DCU may contact the referees and/or the National Governing Body of Sport, High-Performance Manager and/or Team Coach to verify an applicants sporting achievements 

When will I know the outcome of my application?
For CAO Points Concession
Applicants who have applied through CAO and have submitted the application form by 1st May will initially be assessed. Those deemed eligible will progress in the assessment process. Ineligible applicants for this entry scheme will receive e-mail communication from DCU before the 1st of July 2021. Their ineligibility for this specific scheme does not prevent them from progressing with their application through CAO for assessment based only on their qualifications.  Eligible applicants are made offers through the CAO in mid-August. This academic entry scheme and any potential offer of a place at DCU through CAO does not include an offer of a Sports Scholarship.

For Sport Scholarships
Sport Scholarship applications are assessed in May and June.  Applicants that are deemed ineligible by DCU for Sport Scholarships will receive e-mail communication from DCU before the 1st of  July 2021. Applicants that are deemed eligible by DCU will receive e-mail communication from DCU before the 1st of  July 2021 and will progress in the assessment process.  

The outcome of applications for CAO Points Concession and Sport Scholarships will be communicated by e-mail using the e-mail address listed in the application form. 

 

General Eligibility
 

To apply for the DCU Sports Scholarship programme athletes must fulfil the general eligibility criteria as listed below.  Information on what sports are considered is available in the next section.

  • Applications will be considered from current students and also from prospective students. In order to be considered for a sport scholarship prospective students must meet the DCU admission requirements through the CAO system and must enrol on a programme of academic study at DCU. Current students must show academic progression and maintain a satisfactory academic standard throughout the duration of their course.
  • Only sports recognised by Sport Ireland will be considered. Please contact Sport Ireland for more information on tel: 01 860 8800 or visit www.sportireland.ie
  • Only sports whereby DCU has a respective sports club and sporting discipline will be considered.  To view the list of DCU Sports Clubs visit www.dcuclubsandsocs.ie
  • Maintain an appropriate level of commitment to the DCU sports club in your sport, in intervarsity and other competitions and/or training
  • Contribute to the administration, coaching, promotion and development of the DCU club
     
What Sports are considered for CAO Points Concession and Sport Scholarships 
 

Sports Scholarships are intended for persons of outstanding sporting ability.  We accept applications in our priority sports of Athletics, Basketball, GAA Sports, Soccer and Rugby.  We also consider applications in other sports from athletes of a Junior or Senior International standard, with participation at European/World Championship or Olympic level and part of a high-performance squad with their NGB.   The minimum standard of entry in each of DCU's priority sports is listed in the table below.   These criteria are set to give applicants a guideline to follow when understanding the term ‘performance sport’, however, the University may adapt its criteria depending on the sport in question.  Please note the following:

- Meeting all the criteria does not mean an automatic offer of a CAO Points Concession and/or Sport Scholarship.

- The eligibility and selection criteria reflect the evolving nature of CAO Points Concession and Sport Scholarships, and DCU reserves the right to amend the criteria for selection according to the requirements of the scheme.

- DCU reserves the right to set the definition of performance and the sport-specific eligibility criteria to reflect the
the performance level of athletes based at the University

 

Sport Minimum Criteria 
Athletics

Schools, Youth or Junior International representation

Basketball Playing at Superleague Level and may have Ireland Junior/Senior squad representation
GAA Minor county level and capable of competing at a higher level
Women's Rugby Provincial and/or Ireland representation at 7’s or 15’s and IRFU All Ireland League/Leinster League Division 1 Player
Men's Rugby Provincial and/or Ireland representation at 7’s or 15’s and IRFU All Ireland League/JP Fanagan Premier Division 1/2 Player
Women's Soccer International Junior/Senior player and WFAI Women’s National League/ Women’s Premiership Club Player
Men's Soccer Irish Schools or Underage International squad player and League of Ireland Premier Division/Northern Ireland Football League Premiership Club Player
Other Sports

Proven Junior or Senior International with participation at European/World Championship or Olympic level and part of a high-performance squad with their NGB

How to Apply

To apply for the Performance Sport CAO Points Concession and/or the Sport Scholarship programme applicants must complete an online application form available here. Please note:

-  Applications for programmes for the 2021-2022 academic year will open on the 1st of February 2021 and the closing date for receipt of applications is the 1st of May 2021 at 5.15pm

 - Applicants that apply for the CAO Points Concession programme must also make an application for a DCU programme of study through the CAO.  Applicants should apply through the CAO by the normal closing date of 1st February or before the late closing date of 1st May and complete a DCU Performance Sport online application form.

-  Paper applications or late applications will not be accepted.  

Sport Scholarship Contacts

General Sports Scholarships 

Yvonne McGowan

Senior Sports Development Officer 

Tel: 01 700 5811

E-mail: yvonne.mcgowan@dcu.ie 

Athletics Scholarships

 

Paul Byrne

Head of Athletics

Tel: 01 700 8479

E-mail: paul.byrne@dcu.ie 

 

GAA Scholarships

Paul O'Brien

Interim Head of Gaelic Games

Tel: 087 915 4748

E-mail: paulobrien.gaa@dcu.ie

 Soccer and Powerchair Football Scholarships 

Fran Butler

Soccer Development Officer

Tel: 01 700 8722

E-mail: soccer@dcu.ie

 Rugby Scholarships

Rugby Development Officer

Tel: 01 700 5811

E-mail: yvonne.mcgowan@dcu.ie