By Tamica Garnett
President of the Athletics Association of Guyana (AAG), Colin Boyce, and President of the Guyana Olympic Association (GOA) K. Juman-Yassin have both commented that the scholarship possibility extended to athlete Jevina Sampson is a clear indication of the progress of the sport in Guyana.
Conveying their joy over the opportunity being offered the 11-year old, the two athletics officials noted that this scholarship offer was evidence that in Guyana athletics had indeed opened doors for young athletes.
According to Juman-Yassin this showed that the stupendous abilities of Guyana’s athletes were receiving the international attention they deserve, and clearly showed that sports on the whole was doing something for the youngsters who are involved.
Boyce in his comment said that the whole of Guyana should share in the joy that one of our very own was being extended such a prestigious offer.
“The GOA, AAG and the whole of Guyana should be happy for her. To know that an athlete at such a tender age can receive such an opportunity,” Boyce stated
Boyce went on to state that with the potential that Sampson has already displayed given such a massive chance to improve on her skills in the not too distant future, she may very well give recognition to Guyana on the international stage.
“By 2016 she should be able to give a good account for herself on the international scene because she has the potential,” Boyce stated.
Jevina Sampson through the GOA was earlier his year selected by the AAG to attend a Singapore Youth Olympic Scholarship (SYOS) Selection Programme, after the GOA had received an invitation to send an eligible awardee for a scholarship to the Singapore Sports School.
The scholarship is a legacy of the inaugural Youth Olympic Games which will be held in Singapore from August 14– 26. The Singapore YOG Organising Committee is offering six scholarships to six budding athletes between the ages of 13 – 15 who specialize in one of the five summer sport categories.
And Sampson was among nine young sporting achievers from around the world who were short-listed to attend an assessment interview at the school from June 14–18.
Sampson, traveling in company with her mom, Dian Gladstone, attended the interview. Sampson, along with the other selected athletes, underwent academic and athletics assessments to determine who will be granted the scholarship to attend the school.
The scholarship recipients will be in receipt of a fully-subsidized academic and sports education at the school for a period lasting four to six years.
Upon returning from the interview both Sampson and her mom conveyed their optimism that Sampson would be among the lucky six to receive one of the scholarships.
Boyce who was equally optimistic said both he and the rest of the AAG would be expectedly disappointed if Sampson was not in receipt of the scholarship but he strongly doubts that would be the outcome.
“We would all be disappointed if she doesn’t get it, but we are not focusing on the negative. From all indications everything seems to be on the positive side and we are very optimistic,” Boyce stated.
Boyce conveyed his belief that a number of such opportunities lay await for those potential athletes who stand out, but stressed that for athletes to become eligible they needed to focus equally on their academics in addition to their athletics. Boyce stated that was one of the key criteria upon which Sampson was chosen.
“A lot of similar opportunities can be up for grabs for the other athletes but the athletes need to be good both in their athletics as well as in their academics,” Boyce stated
The six awardees are expected to be determined by the committee later this month. The six accepting athletes are then expected to attend an award ceremony during the Games in August, and they will begin attending the school from January 2011.