CUHK and HKSI Sign MOU on Elite Athletes Study Programme
Joining Hands to Shape the Future of Elite Athletes
To foster dual career pathways for elite athletes, the Hong Kong Sports Institute (HKSI) and The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) today (30 March 2017) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on the Elite Athletes Study Programme.
The MOU was signed by Professor Poon Wai-yin, Pro-Vice-Chancellor, CUHK, and Dr Trisha Leahy BBS, Chief Executive, HKSI, with the signatures witnessed by The Hon Lau Kong-wah JP, Secretary for Home Affairs, HKSAR, Mr Yeung Tak-keung JP, Commissioner for Sports, HKSAR, Professor Joseph Sung SBS JP, Vice-Chancellor and President, CUHK, Professor Michael Hui, Pro-Vice-Chancellor, CUHK, and Mr Carlson Tong SBS JP, Chairman, HKSI and University Grants Committee.
Under the MOU, the HKSI may nominate 20 elite athletes to apply for admission to full-time undergraduate studies in CUHK per year. In addition, elite athletes can apply for admission to eight full-time Higher Diploma Programmes in the School of Continuing and Professional Studies, CUHK. CUHK will also provide flexibility in the curriculum to better accommodate student athletes’ intensive training and competition schedules, and enable them to train full-time. The maximum study period for student athletes who are being nominated and admitted into CUHK will be extended to eight years for full-time undergraduate studies, whilst the study period for the Higher Diploma Programmes will be extended to a maximum of five years. The University will arrange a mentor for each of the admitted elite athletes. The mentor will support their academic work, and help them adapt to university life.
Professor Joseph Sung said, “I strongly believe that the collaboration will not only benefit elite athletes but also foster the sports culture and team spirit on our campus. By joining sports activities, our students will be able to stay strong, raise their resilience, and build up the ability to cope with adversity and stress, thereby living a positive and healthy life.”
Mr Carlson Tong remarked, “The HKSI attaches great importance to the provision of all-rounded support to elite athletes. Enhancing collaboration with tertiary institutions is one of our major endeavours. Since elite athletes have an intensive training and competition schedule, and they have to travel overseas frequently for competitions, they are often unable to strictly follow a school’s timetable. Thanks to CUHK for understanding the unique lifestyle of elite athletes. With the provision of a flexible curriculum, young athletes will be able to continue their academic study whilst being left pursue their dreams.”
After the signing ceremony, Hong Kong elite athletes Ma Wing-yu and Tong Tsz-wing shared their study experience at CUHK and gave tips on how to strike a balance between studying and training. Ma Wing-yu, an undergraduate student studying Hospitality and Tourism Management at CUHK, is a member of the Hong Kong cycling team. She pointed out that the extension of the study period to eight years allows her to flexibly arrange her study, training and competition schedules. Tong Tsz-wing, a squash athlete and a CUHK graduate who studied psychology, said that she had put in extra effort in order to attend, simultaneously, to her education and sports training. She expressed her gratitude to CUHK’s and the HKSI’s support which enabled her to obtain an undergraduate degree. She believes that the collaboration will allow young athletes to have dual career development, and make remarkable achievements both academically and on the world sports stage.