Dyldam Parramatta Eels forward David Gower and Holden Cup forward Tyrell Fuimaono were last night awarded with the Rugby League Player’s Association NRL and NYC Education Player of the Year.

Gower was the Blue and Gold’s nomination for the 2015 NRL Educational Team of the Year for his recognition of the extra time he dedicates throughout the season encouraging aspiring NRL stars in particular to plan for their professional and educational futures.

The former NSW Apprentice of the Year is also the Parramatta Eels Education Ambassador, a leader in the Trade Up program, a workshop facilitator in the NRL’s social responsibility courses and the Eels’ player representative on the Parramatta Education and Welfare Committee. 

“Winning this award is an especially big deal to me because I believe education is so important for rugby league players,” Gower said.

“The young guys especially need to understand that rugby league isn’t always a 10-12 year career and it’s hard to make it. It’s not a job that everyone can do.”

“You’ve got to make sure off the field is settled, and when off the field is settled generally you’re a lot more settled on the field and you can play some good footy.”

Fuimaono is a success story of the NRL Indigenous School to Work Program, with the 19 year old currently enrolled in a Bachelor Business & Commerce at the University of Western Sydney.

Fuimaono has achieved High Distinction and Distinction grades in his first year

which are the equivalent of his on-field success where he has gained selection in the Junior Kangaroos and the NSW U/20s teams.

Fuimaono attended the NRL Indigenous Leadership Camp earlier in the year and is part of a developing leadership and mentoring program at the Eels.