BADMINTON player Ella Smith and cyclist Corbin Strong were honoured by Academy Southland at the end-of-year celebration on Monday.
The two-year Academy Southland sports programme includes Foundation and Leadership and provides advice and guidance around mental skills, performance nutrition, athlete life and strength and conditioning.
Smith (17) was named the Foundation year winner after a year in which she was selected for the New Zealand under-19 badminton team.
Strong (17) had an impressive Leadership year with the academy. He won a bronze medal as part of the team pursuit at the junior world track championships, three under-19 titles at the Oceania championships in Cambridge, a stack of national and provincial titles and was named Southland secondary schools male sportsman of the year.
Programme manager Jason McKenzie said Strong and Smith were great examples of what the programme had been set up for.
“Both these athletes have shown real commitment to the programme and applied the learning that they have received during the year,” he said.
Applications for the Academy Southland 2018 intake will open in the new year.