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When she took part in the inaugural IOC Young Reporters Programme in 2010, May Chen was a recent communication studies graduate from Singapore, happy to experience something different in her life. Little did she know how great an impact the programme would have on her career.
The Youth Olympic Games (YOG) Singapore 2010 were May’s first taste of a major sporting event (and the Olympic Movement). Being mentored by established sports media veterans and learning on the job at a historic event, alongside like-minded peers from all over the world, was – to put it simply – life-changing.
“Many of us remain in touch, and the times where we’ve reunited at other Games – whether it’s London, Nanjing or Rio – always feel special,” May says.
For May, the Young Reporters Programme should be prized for the fact that, at the very event where the world is being introduced to up-and-coming athletes, budding sports reporters are, at the same time, being nurtured and encouraged.
At the end of the programme in Singapore, she went on to earn the chance to work at the Olympic Games London 2012. This assignment cemented her desire to embark on a career in sports journalism.
Working on the sports desk of The Straits Times (Singapore’s national English daily), she has covered multiple major events since getting a first taste of reporting at the Singapore YOG, including the Olympic Games Rio 2016, the YOG Nanjing 2014, and the 2011 and 2015 editions of the South-east Asian Games.
In February 2018, May will report for the Olympic Information Service (OIS) at the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018 in the Republic of Korea.