Teaching & Learnings

University/Career Networking

Our Career and University Networking Section’s objective is to work on assisting the student-athletes by identifying their potential career opportunities. In addition, it supports each student-athlete in order to qualify for joining a university, while promoting continuous sports development. Moreover, the Career and University Networking serves as a resource for the greater Qatar sporting community in the area of advancing student-athletes’ career and higher education opportunities.

The Career and University Networking’s role is wide-ranging and diverse. It:

  • provides educational and professional counseling services
  • provides information about the local job market
  • establishes career resource center
  • follows up with students during and after graduation
  • administers interests, professional preferences and personality tests
  • provides support programs for the students
  • conducts individual and collective meetings with students

The Section’s responsibilities also include working on the intellectual and emotional development of the student-athletes within a career and a lifelong learning development plan, with the importance of working collaboratively with the parents and school staff. Furthermore, the Section’s focus is to present an exceptional career and a further education and counseling program to the current Aspire Academy student-athletes, to Aspire Academy graduates (alumni), and to the community experts in the industry.

The Career and University Networking works with student-athletes, their parents or guardians, teachers and other related organizations such as the Qatar Foundation, Qatar University, local and international colleges and universities, together with other professional institutions.

Academic Achievements

While some of our student-athletes have excelled at sports, Aspire Academy is proud to have also achieved significant success in education. Our inaugural graduation class of 2008 featured 23 student-athletes and by 2014 we have had a total of 214 graduating alumni.

The entry rate into university for our graduates, both in Qatar and abroad, is over 70% and includes acceptance into reputable universities including Manchester University, Loughborough University Leeds University & Cardiff University (UK) and Boston University, Denver University (USA).

Further, nearly 80% of our graduates remain active in their sport, either at club, representative or on a professional basis in the years following Aspire Academy.

Due to their professional preparation in sport these graduates have a positive impact to their peers, in particular in the local club system; and some of them are likely to go on to administrative and leadership positions in Qatar's sporting community. In addition, these graduates continue to lead an active life and thereby promote a healthy lifestyle within the local community.



Advisory Council

The Advisory Council will meet throughout the school year to deal with major management issues and to affirm its commitment to provide the highest possible standard of education to its students. Being the guardian of the vision, mission, and values the Advisory Council offers support, guidance and oversight to the Leadership Group and ensures accountability, transparency and ethics in all areas.

The key roles of the Advisory Council are:

  • Work with the Academy to enhance the overall experience of student-athletes and families by identifying curriculum areas and learning opportunities that can be improved.
  • Assist the Academy staff in encouraging parents of top prospects to send their children to the Academy.
  • Respond to Academy requests for their opinion on parent/student-athlete issues.
  • Serve as ambassadors to parents, families and other organization to promote Aspire.

The Advisory Council shall consist of one parent representative for each year group and one deputy parent representative. At least one representative from each year group is required to attend meetings. The Director of Education, the Director of Sport and the Head of Student Care will serve as ex-officio, non-voting members. The Advisory Council may request the attendance of the School Principal or any other staff member at any time.

The Chairman of the Advisory Council conducts the meeting in Arabic and an Aspire Academy staff member provides English translation. Any member may suggest an item for the agenda by informing the Chairman one week prior to the meeting. The agenda shall be distributed to all members of the Advisory Council three days prior to the meeting. Any formal recommendation made to Aspire should be directed to the Director General, a formal vote taken and the results of that vote recorded in the minutes of the meeting. The Advisory Council meeting summaries are posted on the www.aspire.qa website.

Student – Athletes Representative Council

Aspire Academy seeks regular input from student-athletes through the Student-Athlete Representative Council. The Academy does the best for student-athletes to have a chance to voice their own opinions to the Council, in order to improve the overall school experience. One representative and one deputy representative for each class level are elected by their classmates. This group in turn elects a President and Vice-President to head the Council. The Council meets regularly with various administrators to provide feedback on a variety of issues pertaining to the student-athletes experiences at the Academy.

Being part of the Council gives the elected students responsibility, and teaches the students about democracy and leadership, as we plan to engage in some informal debate regarding key issues. The Council organizes student assemblies to celebrate student achievement, learning and acknowledges achievements outside of the Academy such as volunteering, community service and fund raising events.

Student Portal

More than just a link that student-athletes access, the Student Portal is our innovative solution providing on-campus organizations, faculty and staff, alumni – and of course the student-athletes, with unparalleled access to their academic and social information all at one unified platform. The intuitive web-link is user-friendly, accessible, customizable and updateable; http://ilearn.aspire.qa

Curriculum

Aspire Academy has adopted a comprehensive concept of curriculum that is based on a set of principles and standards of realism, mainly:

  • The rapid global developments in science and technology.
  • General policies of the State of Qatar, embodied by the vision and wise leadership.
  • The curriculum document approved by the Qatari Ministry of Education and Higher Education.
  • Curriculum standards accredited by the Qatari Supreme Education Council.
  • The vision and mission of Aspire Academy in general, and that of the educational administration in particular.
  • The student-athletes’ changing needs and abilities.

Courses and Subjects

All our subjects are carefully selected to reflect our vision of preparing complete sportspersons that are well-disciplined, competitive and honest. Our courses and subjects feature studies of:

  • Arabic
  • Islamic Studies
  • English
  • Mathematics
  • Science: Biology, Chemistry, Physics
  • Social Studies: History, Geography
  • French
  • Spanish

Sport Training and Development Camps

Aspire Academy teachers travel with student-athletes on their Training Camps and give revision lessons to those who have to sit for the second session exams. The teachers run and supervise the second session exams during the camp time.

The teachers also conduct a number of educational activities that cover various subject areas with an aim to promote the concept of teamwork within the student-athletes’ minds, help them interact with others as well as develop their character and improve their language and critical-thinking skills. The teachers accompany the student-athletes during their free time, in the hotel and during prayer times.

HOPE

Aspire Academy launched the H.O.P.E Project – Habituating Overseas Professional Experience – to provide its young football players (ages 18+) with the opportunity to experience training and playing for well-established professional football clubs in Europe. By sending a selection of its football players to these renowned football organizations, Aspire strives to help them gain experience, develop their skills and compete with elite, multinational players coming from various multi-cultural backgrounds.

The H.O.P.E project has been launched in harmony with the school vision and mission that aims at promoting a responsive environment and realizing Qatar’s plan to prepare a National Football Team by the time it hosts the 2022 World Club.

Within this framework, Aspire Academy caters for all the needs of its student-athletes including learning during their sports experience abroad. The learning process is carried out either through direct assistance of teachers and tutors, who travel to cover the curriculum, or via e-learning.

 



Internationalism

 
Aspire Academy’s curriculum is partially governed by Qatar’s Supreme Education Council (SEC) which has developed curriculum standards in four subjects: Arabic, English, mathematics and science. These standards are internationally benchmarked, based on exam boards and academic expectations of countries where student-athletes achieve high standards. The SEC standards are also validated by international universities. Student-athletes who meet the standards are expected to be competitive for college admission and jobs throughout the world. Our own graduates have gone onto universities throughout the Middle East, the United Kingdom and the United States.

Through its far-reaching programs, Aspire Academy believes it equips its student-athletes with the knowledge, skills, attitudes and values they need in order to assume future roles of responsibility in all walks of life. They are taught within a learning environment based on Arabic and Islamic culture, heritage and values. At the same time, they develop respect and tolerance of other cultures.

Aspire Academy’s student-athletes are taught English, mathematics and science in English language. International students learn Arabic and all of them attend Islamic Studies and Arabic classes. International student-athletes learn Social Studies, Leadership and Sport Culture in English. All student-athletes from September 2011 onwards have the opportunity to attend French and Spanish. Student-athletes and teachers are encouraged to become involved in service to the local and wider global community and to develop an informed awareness of national and international issues.

Our student-athletes come from many countries and it is in a spirit of inclusiveness that we aim to nurture the whole child, providing them with the educational and social experiences that promote the acquisition of knowledge, critical thinking and a whole host of skills and competences that our student-athletes experience in our culturally diverse and rapidly changing world.

Aspire Academy’s Sports Science program (comprising Dieticians, Physiotherapists, Strength and Conditioning Coaches and Sport Scientists) monitors the student-athletes’ health, fitness and growth throughout the years here. The Sports Science program educates the student-athletes on the physiological and biological components of sports and fitness. As part of the curriculum Aspire Academy furthers their learning through Leadership and Sports Culture which is taught in Arabic and English.

While developing the learning agenda in 2010-11, Aspire Academy formed a new definition for learning: “Learning is the motivation of acquiring new knowledge, skills, values and understanding in a curious respectful developing environment, in order to become a lifelong global learner”.

Aspire Academy student body is made up of many different nationalities and the teaching staff is multicultural. We value the input from our teachers who are able to bring knowledge and skills from many parts of the world. Aspire Academy pays for the international student-athletes to keep in regular contact with their families back in their home countries and fly families out once a year to stay at Aspire Academy.

When the student-athletes travel they continue their studies with a virtual learning environment called Blackboard. Through Blackboard, exchanges are beginning to be set up with other international schools. For example, Aspire Academy student-athletes have had the opportunity to form pen pal friends with students from a British international school in Houston, Texas to discuss sport and culture-related issues.

Throughout the year, many sporting teams from all over the world visit, stay, train and compete at Aspire Academy. The student-athletes often interact with the visiting teams through competition, training and socials. This is the same when they travel for competitions.

Aspire Academy also serves the local community and is regarded as a beacon of excellence in sports and education. Student-athletes and teachers play a large part in most events that take part in Aspire and within Qatar and act as international ambassadors for Qatar. They interact with peers from all over the world and share many cultural exchanges, examining differences whilst celebrating national heritage.

The Education and Students’ Care Directorate, the LDP and the Aspire School, in coordination with other departments and sections in Aspire, celebrate the Global Citizenship Day each year. Such an event provides student-athletes and staff members with an exclusive opportunity to live an amazing experience not only by representing their home countries and local cultures, but also by being exposed to other cultures. The Global Citizenship Day promotes Aspire core values such as respect and internationalism as stated in our vision and mission.

When traveling abroad, Aspire Academy’s student-athletes have a strict behavioral code. This is to uphold the outstanding reputation of Aspire Academy and is monitored by coaches, teachers and selected sports science staff. The student-athletes usually have a day off which is called a cultural day where an organized tour of the city is experienced by the team. The international student-athletes have weekends organized by the residential educators to experience Qatari culture.

These include lively desert trips and visits to cultural village, souks, museums and much more. Our senior student-athletes also get the opportunities to visit international universities whilst travelling. In addition, Aspire Academy has hosted an American University Open Fair for student-athletes and teachers.



Code of Conduct

Expectations and Behavior

Positive behavior of each student-athlete is extremely important and is supported collaboratively by residential educators, coaches, team leaders, teachers and parents. The principles of safety, respect, responsibility, honesty, kindness and integrity are constantly encouraged and feed into our mission statement. Student-athletes are expected to be polite, thoughtful, hard-working and well-organized.

The belief underpinning the Behavior Policy is that student behavior is best modified through reward rather than through sanction, and that, where possible, students found doing things right or acceptably should be praised for this. This creates a culture where good behavior is repeated in future.

Aspire Code of Conduct

The Classroom Code of Conduct policy and procedure is an ‘initiative’ of the Behavior & Classroom Management Group. The overall aim of the Classroom Code of Conduct is to:

  • Improve positive student behavior
  • Raise motivation
  • Enhance learning within ASPIRE

It is our belief that through clearly defined behavioral expectations, followed by a system of regular monitoring, evaluation and accountability, we can help instill within our students the fine qualities of long-life learning and leadership.

It is our belief that through clearly defined behavioral expectations, followed by a system of regular monitoring, evaluation and accountability, we can help instill within our students the fine qualities of long-life learning and leadership.

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