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Elite Athlete Friendly University program

Elite Athlete Friendly University program

The Elite Athlete Friendly University (EAFU) program supports Australia’s elite athletes
to achieve academic excellence while also pursuing a sporting career.

The value of combining both sport and higher education to achieve greater life success is
well recognised across the university and sporting sectors.

There are 39 universities across Australia that are part of the EAFU network. Each of these
universities has a contact person to support elite athletes within their university.

The EAFU contact provides:

  • advice and guidance on academic planning
  • support in negotiating flexibility to meet
    academic requirements
  • advocacy within the university environment
  • support in negotiating and/or implementing
    cross-institutional study or credit transfer

To locate EAFU contacts, visit the Personal Excellence website:

Please note — not all universities in the EAFU program provide all of the support services outlined.

You will need to check with your university as to how they can assist you.

Benefits of the EAFU?

Universities belonging to the EAFU network understand athletes require increased support
to successfully combine study, training and competition. As a result, eligible athletes
may be able to negotiate their study options, assessment and course entry.

Flexible study options

  • Enrolment:
    • academic study loads
    • lecture, tutorial and practical timetables
    • extending the minimum time to complete courses due to periods of decreased
      study load
    • several leaves of absence where required (for example, an Olympic year)
    • cross-institutional study options with interstate universities.
  • Assessment:
    • assessment deadlines, and the possibility of sitting exams externally under exam
      conditions while competing overseas
    • attendance at lectures, tutorials or practicals.
  • Course entry:
    • A number of universities allow elite athletes to submit accompanying
      documentation regarding athletic pursuits and achievements for
      consideration for course entry. This is normally highlighted within tertiary admissions documentation.

Who is eligible?

For athletes to access the support EAFU program, they must be recognised as an elite athlete by one of the following:

  • AIS
  • State institute or academy of sport
  • AFL Players’ Association
  • Australian Cricketers’ Association
  • Rugby Union Players’ Association
  • Rugby League Professionals Association
  • Australian Professional Footballers’ Association
  • Alternatively, they must be a national squad member from Australian Sports Commission funded sports.

If an athlete is not recognised by one of the above, they may submit an application for consideration to the university. The university will use its discretion in assessing student athletes. 

How to get involved

Contact the AIS, your state institute or academy of sport, university or player welfare manager to discuss how the EAFU network can help you.

To check if your university participates in the scheme, visit the Personal Excellence web site:

For further information contact: AIS Personal Excellence program on Tel: (02) 6214 1621.

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