11 August 2008 :During the Beijing Olympic Games, the IOC is launching a new programme for athletes. It will provide guidance and tools to help them to manage training, competition and the challenges and opportunities of day-to-day life. The programme has been designed with the advice of elite athletes, coaches and experts from around the world.
It focuses on three fields:
· Life skills
· Career management
Education: about the “second challenge”
The Education part of the programme stresses the importance combining sport with studies in order to be prepared for the “second challenge”, meaning the transition after one’s sports career to another kind of activity, a change of focus from sports performance to a more standard job. “Successful job integration unquestionably starts with education,” says IOC member Sergey Bubka, Chairman of the Athletes’ Commission, the future participants of the project.
Life Skills: “overall success in life”
The life-skill training includes information, practical tools and guides on subjects such as health, nutrition, finance, media training, time management, public speaking and goal setting. ”Athletes should be able to develop their athletic skills, and at the same time, develop their social and professional skills,” says Bubka.
Career management: or how to find or develop a job
The third element is concentrating on career management training, in collaboration with Adecco, the IOC and various National Olympic Committees. It should allow the athletes to acquire support and advice, including information on drafting a curriculum vitae, job hunting and job interview techniques. This programme may also help with job placement and career development.
The launch during the Beijing Games allows the IOC to make athletes aware of this programme. It also wants to encourage them to participate. Olympians and experienced athletes – on elite level – are asked to fill in the attached questionnaire. The analysis of all the answers will allow the IOC to assess the main expectations of the athletes for this project. “The Athletes’ Programme depends very much on your involvement, so get active, share your needs with us: give us your best!“ concludes IOC President Jacques Rogge.