Sports institute for Coast

Written on the 10 August 2009

An Australian-first sports institute has been established at Runaway Bay.

The Australian Sports Academy, based at Runaway Bay Sports Super Centre, will offer 21 certificates and diploma qualifications in sports education and training including sports coaching, sports development, marketing, event management, fitness and administration.

The academy operates alongside the nation’s first academic football (soccer) institute – the Australian Football College.

According to academy CEO Ahmed Sokarno, the academy and college will provide students and adults with Australia’s first formally-aligned sports and tertiary education qualifications in sport.

“The Queensland Government has formally recognised the Australian Sports Academy as a registered training organisation and the first of its type in the country to have that number of sports academic qualifications,” says Sokarno, a former national football representative of Egypt.

“That’s a huge boost to sport and education in this region and a strong vote of confidence in the Gold Coast as a leading domestic and international sports business destination.

“We’re very confident we will attract tertiary students from throughout Australia, Asia, the Middle East and beyond, and courses can be taught multi-lingual.

“They are designed to provide a proper career path for people who want to professionally play, coach or work in administration.”

Sokarno says the Australian Football College is proving popular locally with strong interest from international students.

“We are losing out to Britain because so many Asian students go there to train in football administration,” he says.

“Now that we’re offering something very similar here, closer and in a much better climate, there is huge potential.”

Sokarno believes there is a distinct advantage for students as the academy also has a partnership with Australian Academy – a vocational education training provider where students have an option to learn business skills as part of their sporting studies.
Sokarno also notes a new addition for the Gold Coast’s sports education offerings.

“Currently at the planning and application stage is a college for year 11 and 12 students which will focus on education to build their sporting careers and high performance training,” he says.


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