Cuala GAA today unveiled a three year sponsorship that includes the first ever player employment and education incentives with American biotechnology company, Amgen.

The first ever GAA club sponsorship to include education and employment incentives has been launched today by the American biotechnology company, Amgen, in conjunction with Cuala GAA club in Dublin.

Amgen’s support of Cuala will last for 3 years and will include an annual education bursary and mentoring for the bursary recipient, a guaranteed place on their coveted 8 month paid Internship programme as well as funding the preparation of all the club’s adult football and camogie teams. This includes five adult men’s football teams, three adult women’s football teams and three Camogie teams.

Today’s launch was attended by the GAA President, John Horan, Amgen Vice President of Regional Manufacturing, Alan Harmon, Director of HR Amgen, Olive Casey and officials from the thriving Dun Laoghaire club.

The attendance included a host of current All-Ireland champions and inter-county stars. Dublin senior footballers, Michael Fitzsimons, Con O’Callaghan, Conor Mullaly and Peadar O’Coifigh Byrne, were joined by Jennifer Dunne from the Dublin Senior Ladies Football team, as well as members of the All-Ireland winning junior camogie winning team – Sinead Wylde, Hannah O’Dea, Roisin O’Grady and Sinead Murphy.

GAA President, John Horan, welcomed the new initiative, and congratulated Cuala on continuing to thrive fielding almost 100 teams. He pointed out that Cuala have dozens of students in Third Level education, and he believes the players in Cuala will leverage the opportunities provided by Amgen to grow and develop in their careers. He said, “This is a truly magnificent announcement which will help these young men and women continue to play the sport they love, as well as give them a wonderful professional opportunity with one of the largest employers in south Dublin. The inclusion of the educational benefits is a wonderful model that hopefully can be copied in other sponsorship deals going forward.”

Allen Harmon, VP of Amgen Regional Manufacturing and site head at Amgen Dun Laoghaire (ADL), said, ‘In Amgen we believe in making a difference in the lives of our patients, staff and communities. From investments in education to inspire future generations of scientists, to recruiting the best people, to supporting communities where we live and work.’

Olive Casey, Director of HR explained, ‘In Amgen Dun Laoghaire we are always looking for talented individuals to join our team. We anticipate that the students who join us from Cuala will become valuable members of our team, supporting us in manufacturing life changing medicines for millions of seriously ill patients around the world.’

Damian McKeown, Chairperson of Cuala GAA added, ‘This is a very special day for our club, and we are delighted to welcome Amgen into the Cuala family. Like all GAA clubs, we strive to help our members excel both on and off the pitch, and this partnership gives the young men and women of Cuala a wonderful opportunity. We look forward to a successful partnership with Amgen.’