Olympic gymnast Toni-Ann Williams to pursue Master's in Sports Administration via Olympic Solidarity

By September 22, 2021

Jamaican Olympian Toni-Ann Williams is in Belgium to begin studies in Sports Administration on an Olympic Solidarity Scholarship via the Jamaica Olympic Association.

The 25-year-old Williams, who created history in 2016 when she became the first gymnast to represent Jamaica at an Olympic Games, made the announcement on her Instagram on Tuesday.

“Never thought I would be going back to school, but I’m excited to announce that this week I will be moving to Europe for the next two years to pursue a Master’s Degree in Sports Administration, Ethics and Integrity,” she said.

“Thank you @jamaicaolympic for this opportunity and thank you to all of my family and friends for being so supportive and encouraging.”

Over the next two years she will pursue her post-graduate degree at several schools in Europe; Ku Leuven in Belgium, Charles University in Prague, the University of Peloponnese in Greece, the University of Pompeu Fabra in Barcelona, Spain, and the Johannesburg Gutenberg-Universitat in Mainz, Germany.

According to JOA CEO and Secretary General Ryan Foster, earlier this year, the IOC, through its Olympic Solidarity Athlete Career Transition Programme, opened an offer to sponsor six former Olympians, globally, to pursue a two-year course of study in the Master of Arts degree in Sports Ethics and Integrity.

The purpose of the programme is to develop a professional approach to and establish Sports Ethics and Integrity as a new internationally recognized profession within the field of sports administration.

“Having learnt of the programme, the JOA decided to encourage and engage our members in March 2021, for those that would have qualified for such a programme as we saw it as an expansion of our Educational Perspective in developing the wholesome athlete,” he said.

“Three applications were received and submitted to the IOC.  The candidates were vetted and interviewed by the selection IOC panel and following this process, the JOA was advised that both Toni-Ann Williams and Megan Tapper were selected and awarded the scholarships.

Mrs Tapper, however, has subsequently deferred her start date.”

Olympic Solidarity will cover all expenses related to tuition, accommodation, travel and student allowances for the duration of the course.

A six-time All-American while attending the University of California, Williams told Sportsmax.TV that she jumped at the opportunity presented by the JOA.

“JOA reached out and let me know that the Olympic Solidarity was offering scholarships to past Olympians with a BA,” said Williams who graduated in 2019 with a Bachelor’s degree in Public Health. She said she opted for Sports Administration because she wanted to learn about the other side of sports.

“I want to switch gears in athletics from just being an athlete to understanding the administration part of the sports world,” said the gymnast who worked at a coach at Townes University last year.

Meanwhile, Foster said the JOA is pleased that two Jamaicans were selected and looks forward to the further contribution of Toni-Ann to sports as she joins a global cohort of students now seeking to pursue careers in sport integrity of governance.

“As she navigates the next two years, we remain supportive of her aspirations and indeed those of other athletes and coaches as we continue to seek out available opportunities for them both locally and internationally,” he said.

“Our recent internship and partnership with the Commonwealth Games Federation is another such opportunity that was created for our members, with Jamaica being the first Caribbean country to receive such an opportunity.”

 

Leighton Levy

Leighton Levy is a journalist with 28 years’ experience covering crime, entertainment, and sports. He joined the staff at SportsMax.TV as a content editor two years ago and is enjoying the experience of developing sports content and new ideas. At SportsMax.tv he is pursuing his true passion - sports.

Related items

  • 'Reggae Boyz will demand respect from Mexico' - Jamaica coach Hall confident heading into crucial qualifier 'Reggae Boyz will demand respect from Mexico' - Jamaica coach Hall confident heading into crucial qualifier

    Jamaica Reggae Boy interim head coach, Paul Hall, was in a bullish mood ahead of Thursday’s crucial World Cup qualifiers against Mexico at the National Stadium.

    The match will be the second fixture but the first World Cup qualifier for Hall, who stepped in to replaced Theodore Whitmore in December of last year.  With the team adrift in sixth place and 7 points behind the qualifying positions, it seems safe to say only a win will do for the Reggae Boyz against a typically dangerous opponent.

    Hall is aware of the challenge at hand but feels confident the team can find a way to pull off the crucial result.

    "We got to make sure we stay focussed and motivated with the task at hand and if we can do that and get into the game and find our rhythm and be expressive with our play then we will be ok," Hall said.

    “They won’t want to lose they are probably going to have the same attitude as ourselves, so I feel it will be a tight affair,” he added.

    “We will respect the Mexicans and what they bring and I would ask my team to make sure that Mexico respects what we bring, with our energy, with our rhythm, and with our desire,” he added.

    The Mexicans, who will be without key players Hirving Lozano and Raul Jiminez, are currently third in the standings, on 14, the same number of points as Panama.  In the reverse fixture, the Mexicans scored late to win 2-1.  The Jamaicans will play Panama three days later before hosting Costa Rica.  All teams are directly above them in the table.  

     

  • Bailey expected to return to full Villa training in two weeks Bailey expected to return to full Villa training in two weeks

    Aston Villa forward Leon Bailey is closing in on a return to the first team, having spent over a month on the sidelines due to injury.

    The Jamaica international was forced to leave the field before halftime after pulling up against Manchester City early in December.

    The injury was similar to one the player had suffered against Everton in September when he was also sidelined for several weeks.  Having missed out on the Jamaica Reggae Boyz three matches for the upcoming international window, Aston Villa coach Steven Gerrard believes the period will provide the player with plenty of time to slowly ease himself back into action.

    “Leon is not too far away and we are hoping to have him back in the next two weeks.

    “The (winter) break will benefit Leon as he won’t miss many more games,” Gerrard said.

    “Hopefully in two weeks’ time he is ready to train with the group,” he added.

    The 24-year-old who moved from Bayer Leverkusen for an estimated £25million last summer has had a stop-start beginning to life at Villa Park but has shown plenty of promise whenever he has managed to get time on the pitch.  He has scored once in 9 appearances.

  • Olympic sprinter TyQuendo Tracey inks deal with Lifespan Spring Water Olympic sprinter TyQuendo Tracey inks deal with Lifespan Spring Water

    Jamaican Olympic sprinter TyQuendo Tracey has signed a deal to be a brand ambassador for Lifespan Spring Water, a statement from his publicist said.

© 2022 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.