337 WHL graduate players awarded WHL Scholarships in fall academic semester.
Calgary, AB – Western Hockey League (WHL) Commissioner Ron Robison announced today that a total of 337 WHL graduate players have been awarded WHL Scholarships for the 2015-16 academic year. The 337 WHL Scholarships awarded represent the highest total for the fall academic season in WHL history.
In addition, 157 current WHL players are receiving financial assistance for enrolling in post-secondary classes while playing in the WHL, many of whom are taking online courses through Athabasca University. Fully funded by WHL member Clubs, all players currently playing in the WHL are encouraged to enroll in post-secondary courses. The financial assistance received for post-secondary studies while playing does not impact on the WHL Scholarship benefits a WHL player is entitled to upon graduating from the League.
This year, 195 of the 337 WHL Scholarship recipients are furthering their education while playing elite hockey at the Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) level. In Western Canada, 122 of these student-athletes are playing in the Canada West University Conference (CWUAA), and have combined their WHL Scholarship with additional financial assistance from their institution to receive the Western Canada Premier Hockey Scholarship.
WHL Scholarship recipients are enrolled this year as full-time students at 73 different post-secondary institutions throughout North America.
The University of Alberta (Edmonton, AB) leads the way with 31 WHL graduates enrolled in full-time studies while 30 former WHL players are registered at the University of British Columbia (Vancouver, BC). The University of Saskatchewan (25), University of Lethbridge (22), University of Calgary (20), University of Regina (18), University of Manitoba (15) and SAIT Polytecyhnic (15) also lead the way in WHL graduate enrollment.
Among the 2015-16 WHL Scholarship recipients, 58 WHL graduates are enrolled at Universities in Eastern Canada with 51 currently playing hockey in the Ontario and Atlantic Conferences of the CIS. In total, 70 WHL graduates are enrolled at a Canadian College, other post-secondary institution, or in a trade or technical training institution, with 22 grads currently playing hockey in the Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference (ACAC) or the BC Intercollegiate Hockey League (BCIHL). Eight WHL graduates are attending a post-secondary institution in the United States.
Administered by the WHL Office, WHL Scholarships are solely funded by the member Clubs of the WHL. This season, WHL Clubs will contribute more than $2.0 million to graduates utilizing the WHL Scholarship.
“The WHL and our member Clubs are very proud to offer our players the most comprehensive hockey scholarship program of its kind in North America today,” stated WHL Commissioner Ron Robison. “We are committed to ensuring our players achieve their academic goals while playing at the top level of the Canadian hockey system.”
Every player who plays in the WHL is eligible to receive the WHL Scholarship. For every season a player plays in the WHL, they receive a guaranteed, full-year WHL Scholarship including tuition, textbooks and compulsory fees to a post-secondary institution of their choice. WHL players can also access financial assistance for post-secondary courses while playing in the League prior to accessing their WHL Scholarship. The WHL and Athabasca University have partnered to offer, through online and other distance education vehicles, fully-accredited university courses to any WHL player interested in further pursuing post-secondary studies while playing in the WHL.
The WHL continues to be the leading provider of Hockey Scholarships in Western Canada. Since 1993, the Western Hockey League has awarded more than 5,500 Scholarships to graduate players, representing an investment by WHL ownership of more than $19 million.
The WHL Scholarship is considered to be the most attractive and flexible hockey scholarship due to the fact it is a fully-guaranteed academic scholarship with no requirement to play university hockey to qualify, and the student-athlete can apply the funding to any post-secondary program of his choice.
Summary – WHL Scholarships 2015-2016:
Canadian Universities, Western Canada – 201
Canadian Universities, Eastern Canada – 58
Canadian Colleges and other institutions – 70
U.S. Colleges, Universities – 8
Total – WHL Scholarships – 337
WHL Graduates continuing to play hockey at the elite Canadian University or College level:
Canada West Conference – 122
Ontario University Athletics /Atlantic University Sport Conferences – 51
ACAC / BCIHL – 22
Total – 195