Three new micro-qualifications in sports education were endorsed by the region’s industry stakeholders, in October, with the aim to assist and improve the Pacific’s sports industry, as well as deliver long-term economic advantages to the region in celebrating its rich sporting traditions.
The three-day meeting was organised by the Oceania National Olympic Committee (ONOC) with technical support provided by the Pacific Community (SPC) to enable the region to take ownership of the endorsed micro-qualifications and promote the delivery of the qualification with regional training providers.
ONOC and SPC have a memorandum of understanding (MOU) on the development and accreditation of 14 short courses as MQ’s and a long-term programme as a regional qualification. This is expected to result in the greater recognition of sports training programmes within the region and beyond and the long-term development of Pacific athletes.
Rajendra Prasad, Educational Quality and Assessment Programme’s (EQAP)s Qualifications Team Leader, explained that “for a Micro-Qualification to be considered and adopted as a regional micro qualification, an endorsement of a wider industry was needed. The majority of the regional sports federations were represented during the development of the micro-qualifications.”
The three endorsed micro-qualifications were developed by an Industry Advisory Committee (IAC). The IAC consisted of representatives of training providers, government officials, consultants and industry experts which represented national and regional sports federations.
ONOC’s Chief Sport Education Programme Officer (Acting), Meli Cavu said that “the new micro-qualifications are essential for the growth of sports for all upcoming games, for the long-term development of athletes and support staff, and for the management and coordination of sporting organisations in support of the ONOC BRISBANE 2032 Programme, which aims to up the performance of athletes from the Pacific Islands by 500 per cent. This is just the beginning of a brighter future of sports in the region.”
The 2021–2024 MOU between SPC and ONOC aims to strengthen the capacity of Pacific sports coaches, administrators, and managers to foster the development of a Pacific sports industry that produces elite athletes who collectively support Pacific economies. This also fits with EQAP's work on short course accreditation and addresses a critical gap in improving the quality of education and training in the region.
EQAP is currently processing the micro-qualifications accreditation applications which are anticipated to be completed in early 2023. Subsequently, the micro-qualifications will be available by training providers across the Pacific.