Today, the 8th IOC Athlete Career Programme (ACP) Forum, held in cooperation with The Adecco Group, kicked off in Beijing, China. Over the next two days, athletes, sports and career counselling experts will share best practices and discuss ways to equip and support athletes worldwide with their career development, not just at the Olympic Games, but throughout their sporting careers and beyond.
Athletes dedicate their time to training, sometimes at the expense of their education or a future career. For many, when they reach the end of their sporting careers, there is one big question then staring them in the face: what’s next? Through the International Olympic Committee’s (IOC) Athlete Career Programme, the IOC helps answer that question.
Launched in 2005 by the IOC Athletes’ Commission following a recommendation from the IOC International Athletes’ Forum, the programme assists athletes as they manage an often challenging transition from training and competing to a new career. Delivered in cooperation with The Adecco Group, the ACP provides resources focusing on three main pillars – education, life skills and employment – while also offering career development, helping identify existing skills, and coaching, and assistance in finding jobs and internships.
Olympic Agenda 2020 has placed athletes at the heart of the Olympic Movement and significant measures have been taken to strengthen the IOC’s support to athletes.Kirsty Coventry IOC Athletes’ Commission
Targeting athletes all over the world and of all ages, the ACP has since its inception reached more than 35,000 athletes from over 185 countries. Following the launch of ACP online resources and successful Outreach Programmes and local ACP programmes in line with Olympic Agenda 2020, the ACP has strengthened relations with National Olympic Committees, and, in 2016, it extended to International and National Federations in a bid to increase the reach of the programme, support the creation of local customised programmes and overall ensure there is widespread support for athletes’ career development.
A Forum to discuss the future
The 8th IOC ACP Forum will provide a unique opportunity to inform the 80 or so participants, including representatives from National Olympic Committees and Adecco managers responsible for delivering ACP programmes locally, of the updated IOC ACP strategy and exchange views on its development and future goals. The agenda includes presentations, panel discussions and interactive sessions as well as a special sport and cultural programme.
Speaking at the opening of the Forum, Zimbabwean Olympic champion and member of the IOC Athletes’ Commission Kirsty Coventry said: “Olympic Agenda 2020 has placed athletes at the heart of the Olympic Movement and significant measures have been taken to strengthen the IOC’s support to athletes. With the IOC Athletes’ Commission, our aim today is to complement this and build on the momentum within existing services to athletes.”
With the IOC Athletes’ Commission, our aim today is to complement this and build on the momentum within existing services to athletes.Kirsty Coventry IOC Athletes’ Commission
The IOC ACP Steering Committee member and Regional Head of Northern Europe for The Adecco Group, Mark De Smedt, added: “As the world’s leading workforce solutions provider, we are proud to have been cooperating with the IOC for the past 12 years, providing career counselling and job placement expertise to elite athletes around the globe.“
Hosted for the first time in Asia and in the Olympic city of Beijing by the Chinese Olympic Committee and the Beijing Olympic City Development Association, it is a chance for the biannual event to strengthen the ACP in a country set to welcome the Olympic Winter Games in 2022 and dovetails with its ambition to leave a lasting legacy for Asian athletes.Learn more about the ACP at: www.olympic.org/ACP