A member of the Dewan Negara has proposed that the Youth and Sports Ministry prepares a career route map for recipients of sports scholarships, especially when they complete their studies in public and private universities.
Senator Baharudin Abu Bakar said the ministry could follow the example of the Public Service Department (JPA) which required its scholarship holders to serve the government for several years.
“Sports scholarship holders are not obliged to work with the government upon graduation, they are only encouraged to contribute towards the nation’s sports development after studying.
“I suggest that the ministry considers preparing career route maps for them as neglecting this human capital would be a waste,” he said in his debate on the Supply Bill 2012 at the Dewan Negara, yesterday.
Besides that, Baharudin said private companies could work with the ministry to provide athletes scholarships and give them the option to work there after graduation.
He said sports scholarships motivated athletes with academic potential to further their studies at public and private universities, polytechnics and community colleges.
Baharudin said when these athletes graduated they would fill the demands of the sports industry market, where various elements had to be considered to ensure the system was sustainable and achieved its objective.
“The most vital element in the sports ecosystem is the athletes as they can boost the sports industry. They are seen as role models and when they win, the sport will become popular, when they lose fans will dwindle.
“In conclusion, the ministry needs to widen this community of athletes for commercial purposes. The ministry needs a strategic plan to produce more athletes like Nicol David, the Sidek brothers and Lee Chong Wei,” he added.