Every four years, Sky Academy select ten English and Irish athletes, aged 16-25 and at the top of their game, to take part in their Sports Scholarship programme. The aim is to help them fulfil their potential on an international stage through funding, mentoring and personal development.
The scheme has already helped 20 athletes on their road to success, including gymnast, Louis Smith, boxer, Katie Taylor, and Paralympic athlete, Olivia Breen. 2017 marks the intake of a new group of superb scholars, whose sports range from athletics to climbing to wheelchair racing.
An important part of the programme is the media training (much-needed once the athletes have a few medals under their belts). To improve their online presence, Sky organised a social media masterclass, which we were invited to scribe.
Ambassadors of the Sky brand, the young athletes were taught some of the basic dos and don'ts of posting online. They discussed best practice for Twitter and Instagram - such as best times to post, how many hashtags, and how to deal with trolls - as well as discussing what type of content will be most valuable to their followers; what is the food of champions? And what does down-time look like for the athletes?
Our scribe, Lauren, produced a rainbow-hued visual guide for the athletes to refer back to as their followers and fans, undoubtedly, grow in size.
It was brilliant to see the next generation of sports stars at the beginning of their careers. We're already following them on Twitter and Instagram and can't wait to see how they progress.