National Football League to Open NFL Academy on Australia’s Gold Coast

GOLD COAST, AUSTRALIA — April 25, 2024 — The National Football League has announced it will open an NFL Academy in Australia in September 2024 to service the Asia-Pacific region, as the league
continues to invest in long-term global football development efforts and pathways for international talent.

The NFL Academy is a major global initiative by the NFL offering talented student athletes the opportunity to combine full-time education alongside intensive training in American football (tackle) — under the
guidance of a world class coaching staff.

“The NFL Academy program is a significant league initiative that is driving football development efforts globally, and successfully changing the lives of young people around the world,” said Brett Gosper, head of Europe and APAC with the NFL. “We look forward to bringing the program to the Gold Coast, Australia and continuing to build authentic player pathways for international talent, giving more young people from across the Asia-Pacific region the opportunity to play the game in the years ahead.”

The NFL Academy will be based at A.B. Paterson College in south-east Queensland on Australia’s Gold Coast, and in partnership with the college will focus on athletic, educational and career pathway opportunities for the student-athletes and the wider community.

Opening its doors in September 2024, student athletes aged 12-18 years old will be eligible to apply for a place in the elite football development program in Australia. The NFL Academy and A.B. Paterson College
will support students with the best education and resources, while promoting football performance, player pathways and future collegiate scholarship opportunities.

The NFL and A.B. Paterson College, supported by the City of Gold Coast and the Queensland State Government, will also fund and build an elite high-performance NFL Academy facility on existing college grounds, to be completed in 2026, that will also be available for community use.

This will be the second NFL Academy for the league globally, with the first in the U.K. supporting athletes from across Europe and Africa. More than 40 alumni have secured college football scholarships in the
U.S. since its inception with over 30 students set to play college football in the 2024 season, and 19 of those athletes playing in Division 1 college programs.

The program will also be central to continuing to grow flag football in the region for men, women and young people following the sport’s successful inclusion at the LA28 Olympic Games. In partnership with the
International Federation of American Football (IFAF), the league is investing in the development and growth of flag football at both grassroots and elite levels across Australia, New Zealand and around the world.
Fast, highly accessible and inclusive, the non-contact format of the game is spearheading extraordinary growth in participation globally. Played by over 20 million people across 100 countries, women and girls
are driving some of the fastest growth.

Jordan Mailata, Australian NFL offensive tackle for the Philadelphia Eagles and alumni of the NFL’s International Player Pathway (IPP) program, will be an ambassador for the NFL Academy in Australia. Mailata’s journey from being scouted by the NFL in 2017 to playing at Super Bowl LVII, provides great inspiration to young athletes from the region.

“Football has changed my life, and opening an NFL Academy in Australia will no doubt help many more young people change theirs,” said Mailata. “The Asia-Pacific region is rich in sporting talent, and I look forward to seeing the next generation of football players out there craft their own pathway to playing in the NFL in the years to come.”

“A.B. Paterson College is proud to be the new home of the NFL Academy in Australia,” said Joanne Sheehy, A.B. Paterson College principal. “We are excited to announce this landmark partnership and
celebrate the start of generational opportunities for our students, staff and the Gold Coast community. A key pillar of the partnership for A.B. Paterson College is the NFL Futures Program which will provide
employment, training, and pathway opportunities for school students through the NFL, the Academy and the NFL’s wider partner network. The NFL is not only strongly aligned with the College through a shared
commitment to high standards in education, but the NFL are supporting A.B. Paterson College’s unwavering dedication to emphasizing character development to best prepare students for life beyond the

“We are absolutely delighted to partner with the National Football League to create a state-of-the-art NFL Academy facility right here on the Gold Coast,” said Mayor Tom Tate. “This deal represents a major
sporting windfall for our city that will deliver capital investment benefits across 10 years. Not only will the city benefit from significant global marketing exposure, but the local community will have access to a new high-performance field and facility that will also allow us to attract more national and international sporting teams to the coast. We know that the Gold Coast is one of the top sporting cities in the world and securing this lucrative deal with a major international sporting body is proof of that. We can’t wait to welcome the NFL to our city.”

Justin McGowan, Trade and Investment Queensland CEO:

“Queensland, and the broader Pacific is home to some of the most naturally gifted athletes in the world. It comes as no surprise that a globally significant brand such as the NFL has identified this region as having the necessary potential for its Asia Pacific headquarters and its next international Academy. The NFL’s goals in the region strongly align with the Queensland Pacific Trade Strategy, the first of its kind in any State or Territory, and we look forward to building on our existing relationship with such a renowned international partner to unlock and grow further opportunities throughout the region.”

NFL Academy talent recruitment camps will take place in Australia and New Zealand beginning in June 2024, with successful participants from these trials joining the first academic class of the NFL Academy in
Australia. Athletes who cannot attend a camp are also eligible to apply at

The National Football League (NFL) is a professional American football league consisting of 32 teams, divided equally between the National Football Conference (NFC) and the American Football Conference (AFC). The NFL is one of the four major