Following the global impact of COVID-19 and subsequent travel restrictions, Premiership Rugby, the Friends of the British Council (FOBC) and USA Rugby have together made the decision to postpone Spring 2020 Premiership Rugby Scholarship Programme.
Twenty-six USA rugby coaches were due to travel to the UK in April to take part in the programme, which provides coaches with a unique experience learning from the best rugby minds in the Gallagher Premiership and leads to awarding their USA Rugby Level 300 coaching qualification.
However, on Sunday 15 March 2020, the United States Department of State declaring a Global Level 3 Heath Advisory for US citizens, advising them to reconsider travel abroad due to the global impact of the Coronavirus pandemic. The British Government has also implemented directives to battle the further spread of the virus, which has resulted in the RFU (Rugby Football Union, England’s rugby governing body) suspending all rugby activity for the rest of the season and Premiership Rugby suspending the Gallagher Premiership and secondary competitions for five weeks.
The health and safety of our Scholarship Winners is of primary importance and as a result of the travel and rugby restrictions, Premiership Rugby, FOBC and USA Rugby have made the difficult decision to postpone the Spring 2020 scholarship trip to later in the year.
Premiership Rugby’s Director of Community and CSR, Wayne Morris, said: “It is with great disappointment we have decided to postpone the Spring 2020 Premiership Rugby Scholarships trip. In these unprecedented times, the safety and wellbeing of our Scholarship Winners is of paramount importance and, given the USA and British Government directives, we know this is the right thing to do. We look forward to rearranging the trip to later in the year and welcoming our 26 American coaches to England and Premiership Rugby.”
Premiership Rugby and its programme partners are committed to the professional development of the coaches and as a result have designed a series of monthly live webinars, with Premiership Rugby experts covering different aspects of coaching and player development.
Premiership Rugby, FOBC and USA Rugby will continue to update the Scholarship Winners on when these will be available and the rearranged dates of the trip to England. In the meantime, the partners encourage everyone to keep up-to-date with their government health guidelines and stay safe and healthy.