(Hong Kong, 3 May 2022) The Sports Federation & Olympic Committee of Hong Kong, China (SF&OC) and the Technological and Higher Education Institute of Hong Kong (THEi) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) in April to offer post-secondary progression pathways to those retired athletes or those who are planning to retire. This partnership will provide diverse supports to retired athletes by offering flexible study arrangements.
The collaboration is launched together by the Hong Kong Athlete Career and Education Programme (HKACEP) and THEi. HKACEP will nominate selected athletes verified by National Sports Federation to enroll in the Bachelor of Social Sciences (Honours) in Sports and Recreation Management programme offered by THEi. HKACEP will provide education scholarship, consultation and life skills training to eligible athletes for their integration into the society. On the other hand, THEi will offer more flexibility for athletes nominated by HKACEP. This includes offering priority to athletes who fulfill the entry requirements, suitably adapting the study period to accommodate their training needs and arranging classes flexibly to enable athletes to obtain a higher academic qualification while at the same time keeping up with their training and tournament schedules.
Mr. Timothy T. T. FOK, GBS, JP, President of the SF&OC, was pleased to join hands with THEi and said, “The collaboration will create a favorable learning environment and opportunities to lay the foundation for their development after athletic retirement. The SF&OC has therefore developed a variety of services for equipping athletes with knowledge and skills for athletic transformation. It is anticipated that retired athletes will continue contributing to society in another capacity.”
Professor Christina HONG, THEi’s President, said, “THEi is pleased to play our part in supporting Hong Kong’s elite athletes in their educational endeavours. Our Sports and Recreation Management (SRM) programme has already been admitting elite athletes such as Stephanie NG, a distinctive Hong Kong artistic gymnast. We look forward to welcoming more sporting talent through the collaboration with SF&OC.”
Mr CHENG Chun-hin, former dragon boat athlete who completed THEi’s Bachelor of Social Sciences (Honours) in Sports and Recreation Management programme with HKACEP education scholarship, with sports therapy specialty. He founded a sports training and rehabilitation centre after graduation, which provides comprehensive and scientific training and treatment for athletes of various sports. He welcomes this collaboration that THEi is one of the few institutes in Hong Kong offering a bachelor's degree related to sports injury prevention and therapy. He believed the collaboration would encourage more retired athletes to devote their career in sports therapy and related areas, in order to fulfill the manpower need in the industry.
Apart from the Education University of Hong Kong, THEi is the second higher education institute engaged in the MOU with SF&OC. SF&OC expects to establish more collaborations with tertiary education institutes in coming future in order to provide more specialised programmes and all-round supports to retired athletes, hence they can explore more possibilities beyond sports.