A pioneering programme aimed at helping professional athletes make the transition from top flight sport to successful long-term careers has been launched today (23 May).
The Athlete Career Enhancement Programme (ACE) has been set up by UK recruitment agency Search Consultancy – Glasgow 2014’s Official Recruitment Supporter – in order to help competitors bridge the often difficult gap between sporting and mainstream careers.
Supporting 14 athletes from across the home nations competing in Glasgow 2014, the scheme will match them to work placement opportunities with sponsors and businesses across the UK.
It will offer athletes who typically ‘retire’ at a young age placements with leading UK companies, businesses careers advice, workshops, and training – allowing them to benefit from the transferable skills between sport and business.
Athletes from across all sports and backgrounds aspiring to compete for their country at Glasgow 2014 are eligible for selection to the programme.
Open to up-and-coming or established competitors, including para-sport athletes, aged 18 years and over, the scheme will assist sportsmen and women who are keen to broaden their horizons, develop work and life skills, and explore future career ambitions in parallel with their training and competition schedule.
Athletes wishing to secure one of the 14 places up for grabs will be nominated by their national Commonwealth Games Association, with selections taking place later this year. In Scotland, Commonwealth Games Scotland will work in conjunction with the sportscotland institute of sport Performance Lifestyle Adviser team.
Simone Lockhart, Managing Director of Search Consultancy in Scotland, said: “As a recruitment specialist Search is keen to support and inspire athletes to benefit from exploring future career paths. Nearly all athletes will have to look at careers away from their sport at some point in their lifetime. Only a few are full-time and funded as professional athletes, many might already work part-time or are currently students in education. However, by applying the things they learn in sport their career opportunities are almost endless.
“Companies will benefit from their skills too, not only are there advantages such as a boost to staff morale and company pride, but also deeper learnings from sport to business such as team work, goal setting, time management, and learning from success and failure. It really is a win-win for both parties.”