New Partnership Announcement

The Sydney Roosters & Easts Group have announced a five-year partnership with the Minerva Network to launch its first tertiary scholarship program.

The Sydney Roosters & Easts Group Minerva Scholarship will be open to Australia’s elite and professional level female athletes who are Minerva Stars and who would benefit from financial support to complete or commence an Australian certified education or vocational qualification in their career off the field.

The partnership will commence in February 2021 to coincide with the commencement of the University and TAFE calendar year.

The Sydney Roosters & Easts Group Minerva Scholarship will be awarded to an outstanding Minerva Star who is a role model on and off the field, has a long-term career goal linked to a proposed area of study and a credible plan to maintain her level of sporting performance despite the study commitment.

Christine McLoughlin, Chairman and Co-Founder of the Minerva Network, said: “We are delighted to welcome the Sydney Roosters & Easts Group as our founding scholarship partner as we launch our Minerva Network Scholarship Program.

“It is the first of a number of scholarships the Minerva Network intends to offer the rising stars of Australian women’s sport as we help our elite athletes bridge the gap between on-field and off-field success.

“The Sydney Roosters and Easts Group are powerful brands in Australian sport and our community and have made a substantial commitment to building pathways for women in sport.

“These scholarships are an investment in our future as the level of skill and discipline shown by our Minerva Stars in competing at the highest level are precisely the traits we look for in the world of business. We hope that other sporting bodies across Australia will follow the lead of the Roosters and Easts as we support the development of these role models who are future Australian leaders.”

Ms McLoughlin said Minerva Mentor and leading HR executive Gabrielle Curtin will Chair the Minerva Network Scholarship Program Committee, which will also include Nicola Wakefield Evans, one of Australia’s leading company directors and Chairman of the 30% Club Australia, and Kate Aitken, Minerva Network Co-Founder and Vice-President Human Resources at Optus. The committee will assess all scholarship applications while inspiring athletes to set their long-term career goals.

Mr Joe Kelly, Chief Executive Officer of the Sydney Roosters and Easts Group, said: “The Sydney Roosters and Easts Group are delighted to partner with the Minerva Network to provide the inaugural tertiary scholarship to one of Australia’s professional female athletes.

“The Minerva Network impressively supports elite and professional sportswomen to maximise their opportunities both on and off the field and our values are deeply aligned to this purpose, as can be seen by the pathway programs we have in place to encourage growth and participation across the women’s game.

“It is difficult when you are so committed to achieving sporting excellence to also fund educational pursuits, so we hope that through the formation of the scholarship program, these Minerva Star athletes get to more readily realise their educational aspirations.

“As an NRL Club we have a strong focus on developing rugby league pathways for girls and women. We also acknowledge the enormous efforts of all women in elite and professional sport and therefore this scholarship is available to any sporting discipline.”

The Minerva Network sees the Scholarship program as complimentary to the mentoring program and development workshops that it has successfully delivered to date, all on a pro bono basis.

The Sydney Roosters women’s pathway continues to grow with sides in the Tarsha Gale Cup (Sydney Roosters) and Harvey Norman NSW Women’s Premiership (Central Coast Roosters). The Roosters are also a foundation club in the NRLW competition which launched in 2018.


About the Minerva Network
Established in 2017, the Minerva Network connects Australia’s elite women’s sport stars with the nation’s most inspiring female business leaders. Minerva was the brainchild of a group of leading Australian businesswomen passionate about empowering professional women athletes on and off the field.