May Chen: a Young Reporter’s #YOGjourney from Singapore to PyeongChang
May Chen was a recent graduate when she joined the IOC Young Reporters Programme at the inaugural Youth Olympic Games (YOG) in Singapore in 2010. Eight years later, the Singaporean is reporting from PyeongChang – and having the time of her life.
Born in Singapore, May Chen has enjoyed a successful media career since being part of the IOC Young Reporters Programme at the first-ever YOG in 2010, including working in Hong Kong as the social media producer for the South China Morning Post. We caught up with her in PyeongChang where she’s currently reporting for the Olympic Information Service (OIS).
When did you join the IOC’s Young Reporters Programme?
“I had just graduated from university around July 2010 – the year Singapore, my home country, hosted the inaugural Youth Olympic Games. One of my professors contacted me to ask if I might be interested in signing up for the Young Reporters Programme. I enjoy watching sports and interned with the sports desk at The Straits Times in my third year of university, so it really was a no-brainer.”
How was your YOG experience?
“It was obviously pretty special for me, given that I’m a Singaporean. For a country as small as ours, hosting something like the YOG – and the first one too! – was quite momentous. It’s always quite different to be at a Games held in your country.
I went into the Young Reporters Programme with little to no expectation of what it might be like, so it’s an understatement to say that it’s been quite a life-changer for me. There are probably very few similar programmes – if any – in the world where you get to report a sporting event as big as the YOG while under the tutelage of seasoned veterans in the industry. It gave me a glimpse into what one can experience and all that is possible within sports reporting.
Without the YOG and the Young Reporters Programme, I know I most likely wouldn’t have gone into reporting, much less sports reporting. It has led to a lot of incredible experiences and amazing things, more than I could ever have enough words for.”
What is your role in PyeongChang?
“I’m a reporter for the Olympic Information Service. I’m part of a team responsible for covering every sport and every medal event at the Games, helping the accredited media to achieve the best coverage they can.”
What has been your highlight so far?
“Singapore fielded its first-ever Winter Olympian – Cheyenne Goh, a short-track speed skater. I was there to watch her compete and interview her in the mixed zone after her event. To witness Singapore sporting history and have a part to play in documenting it was quite incredible.”
What are your future ambitions?
“Sports reporting and the Olympic Movement are, and will continue to be, a big part of me. I can only hope that I’ll be able to continue to marry the two for a long, long time to come.”