The Canadian Olympic Committee has announced a partnership aimed at funding scholarships for high-level athletes. The partnership with Queen’s University seeks to help athletes better balance athletics with education and career development.
The COC will connect with the Smith School of Business at Queen’s to form an 8-year partnership, providing scholarships for athletes and creating a flexible program for athletes to continue their education. Canadian Olympic Committee head Chris Overholt told Canada’s CBC news organization that the program was the COC’s first partnership with an academic institution:
“The COC is committed to providing Canada’s athletes with the tools they need to be successful on and off the field of play,” Overholt told CBC. “Our first-ever partnership with an academic institution marks a significant step towards this commitment. We simply cannot ask our athletes to set aside their personal goals and aspirations for sport and for Canada and then not have a plan for them after they are done. We are excited to partner with such a world-class business school.”
The scholarship program will have options for satellite campuses that allow athletes to continue training at their current training bases without having to relocate to use the program. CBC also reports that there will be a “broad range of programs” and that up to 1200 high-level Canadian athletes will be eligible for scholarship support.