Watching the Olympics is always awe-inspiring. The 22nd Winter Olympics, for all its controversies, is no different.
For many young people, however, there comes a moment when you realize that a lot of those Olympic athletes are the same age as you, and that maybe, just maybe, it’s too late for you to aspire to Olympic glory.
Don’t believe it. Without the support of tens of thousands of highly skilled non-athletes, the Olympic Games simply could not happen. Ready to go for the gold? Check out our sampling of Olympic jobs and get started on your training.
Broadcasting and journalism – The Olympic experience would not be the same without the folks who bring the events and the stories behind them into the homes of the millions of people worldwide who can’t be there in person. If this is the field that appeals to you, Envision offers a program in digital media that will help you on your way.
Sports medicine – The U.S. team alone sent 80 medical personnel to the 2012 London Games. Depending on the year, a given Olympics may have as many as 30,000 medical personnel from around the world on hand to care for all of the athletes, all of whom are volunteers.
Despite the unpaid nature of the gig, competition for a slot on the team is fierce. Applicants need a world-class background in sports medicine and they must receive specialized training at the U.S. Olympic Training Center.
It’s a long-distance track to follow, but a first step might be to enroll in one of Envision’s programs in medicine and health care.
Security – This has been one of the hot topics leading up to the Sochi Games, but event security is not a new concern for the Olympics. The “Munich Massacre” at the 1972 Summer Olympics and the bombing that occurred at the 1996 Atlanta Games provided some hard lessons. Security professionals are constantly adapting to new threats.
Sochi, for example, is currently patrolled by 37,000 security officers. In addition, two U.S. Navy ships have been deployed to the Black Sea to evacuate U.S. citizens if necessary, and at least one private U.S. security firm has been hired to protect some of the athletes.
The need for event security is not likely to go away any time soon, so if you’re interested in the field, check out Envision’s program in national security.
Venue technology – This broad field covers the spectrum of services related to the management, installation and operation of the technology needed for the games. That includes IT systems, telecommunications and audio/visual services.
If you saw the glitch during the opening ceremony at Sochi, you know that tech support for the Olympics is a high-pressure job that requires creativity, innovative thinking and the ability to solve problems on the fly. Envision offers a number of programs in engineering and technology that foster these skills.
Language services – What happens when you bring together people from 89 different countries? You get a lot of different languages and the potential for mass confusion. The professionals in language services set up and manage a huge cadre of interpreters for all those different languages.
Diverse skills are needed for this field. In addition to a background in language and linguistics, successful team members will need leadership and diplomatic skills.
Results management – Everyone says that it’s an honor just to be at the Olympics, but let’s be real. The results are important. And someone has to be in charge of measuring and reporting those results. Given the instrumentation that is needed to gauge and collate event results, this is a highly technical field.
Because of the high level of emotion and national pride involved in the games, however, results management professionals also need advanced leadership skills, including conflict management and negotiation.
Envision has long recognized the need to balance engineering and technology with leadership, and offers programs in both areas. Let the training begin.