AUT Blue Awards honour arts and culture

09 Oct, 2018
Seated guests at the 2017 event

41 students will be honoured for their sporting, arts and culture successes at the AUT Blue Awards 2018 on October 12.

The awards were introduced to honour students who compete beyond their studies at the top level in their chosen sport, art or culture, while maintaining high academic achievement.

For the first time this year, the awards will include the category of arts and culture, acknowledging both athletes and high achieving artistic and cultural students.

“It’s great that AUT has included achievement in art and culture with the Blue Awards for the first time. This recognises the work, skill and success demonstrated by AUT students following their passion while pursuing an academic qualification,” said AUT Sport and Athlete Support Manager Bruce Meyer.

A University Blue is the highest sporting accolade at university level - The tradition began in England with the competition between Oxford and Cambridge universities. Their shared colour of blue came to symbolise excellence in sport.

Former Silver Fern and international netball coach Linda Vagana will MC the evening, with AUT alumna and Olympic boxer Alexis Pritchard presenting as a guest speaker.

This year, along with the AUT female and male athlete of the year (which celebrates exceptional sporting achievement) and AUT sportsperson of the year (which is awarded on both sporting achievement and academic achievement) award, the AUT creative or artistic individual performance of the year will be awarded for the first time.

Congratulations to all AUT Blue Award recipients.

Blue awards will be presented to:


  • Sally Fu – Badminton
  • Polly Inglis – Hockey and cricket
  • Georgia Danford – Cycling
  • Serena Murrihy – Football
  • Robert Tipelu – Football
  • Dayna Manak – Futsal *Finalist for major award
  • Elliot Cooper – Futsal
  • Jared Panchia – Hockey *Finalist for major award
  • Preeya Laud – Ice figure skating
  • Matthew Taylor – Ice hockey
  • Jemma Read – Ice hockey and inline hockey *Finalist for major award
  • Devon Stove – Inline hockey
  • Chris Kennedy – Powerlifting
  • Cameron Webster – Rowing *Finalist for major award
  • Va'anessa Molia – Fraser – Rugby league
  • Nathanael Tan – Rugby union
  • Charlotte Porter – Sailing *Finalist for major award
  • Celia Willison – Sailing
  • Zoe Tolhopf – Softball
  • Alicia Hoskin – Sprint kayaking
  • Javon McCallum – Surf lifesaving
  • Casie Fyall – Surf lifesaving *Finalist for major award
  • Bianca Koper - Taekwondo
  • Finlay Barnett – Touch
  • Alexa Kennedy – Trampoline
  • Jack Robinson – Triathlon
  • Sheena Wejendorp – Ultimate frisbee
  • Ella Ganley - Ultimate frisbee
  • Abby Linton – Price - Ultimate frisbee
  • Julia Forde - Ultimate frisbee
  • Rebecca Gatland – Underwater hockey *Finalist for major award
  • Jessica Milicich – Water polo *Finalist for major award
  • Lauren Jenner - Contribution to sport - Women's rugby refereeing

Arts and Culture

  • Gavin Chai – Art - Painting
  • Cassandra Loh - Design - Moving Image
  • Ella Mcintosh - Music - Cello
  • Brad Hemingway – Radio *Finalist for major award
  • Awhina Shortcliffe - Design - Moving Image
  • Ryan Marsich - Music - Pipe Band - Snare Drum *Finalist for major award
  • Persis Darukhanawalla - Singing – Acappella
  • Lauren Gibbs – Spatial design *Finalist for major award
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