NBA

NBA Academy launches virtual development program for top female international prospects

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The NBA and HomeCourt have announced a game-changing partnership (NBA)

NEW YORK, June 8, 2021 - The National Basketball Association (NBA) today announced the NBA Academy Women's Virtual Program, an eight-week basketball and leadership development program for more than 40 of the top female, high-school age (14-17 years old) prospects from the outside the U.S.

Participants will connect with their peers from around the world and take part in basketball and life skills development programming under the guidance of current and former WNBA players and the NBA Academy staff.

Any parent or legal guardian interested in submitting an application on behalf of their child should submit their child's HomeCourt profile or upload a skills video as outlined in the application form on the NBA Academy website by June 18. NBA Academy Women's Virtual Program participants will be announced in June, with the program starting in July and running through August.

As part of the program's on-court curriculum, participants will receive weekly virtual basketball lessons, instructions and challenges featuring current and former WNBA players. The interactive lessons will include a variety of shooting, ball handling and conditioning drills to promote holistic skill development. The top-performing athletes will be considered for future in-person basketball development camps and showcases.

The life skills programming will feature weekly sessions centered on leadership development, nutrition, goal setting, personal branding, mental health and wellness, player pathway education and women's empowerment. Sessions will feature guest speakers and experts from across the NBA and WNBA family, including NBA Academy Women's Program Global Technical Director and 1996 Olympic Gold Medalist Jennifer Azzi.

"The NBA Academy Women's Virtual Program will continue our mission of helping young women around the world develop as people and players," said Azzi. "International players are making a significant impact at all levels of the women's game, and this program will help top international prospects connect with their peers, learn directly from WNBA players and continue their development."

Since the NBA Academy Women's Program launched in 2018, 25 participants have committed to NCAA Division I schools. China's Han Xu became the first NBA Academy Women's program participant to be drafted into the WNBA when she was selected 14th overall by the New York Liberty in the 2019 WNBA Draft.

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