Olympian Archibald credits UG for his rise in track and field
Twenty-six-year-old Emanuel Archibald, a former student of the University of Guyana, will have a chance to fly the Golden Arrowhead high and make his countrymen proud when he hits the world stage to compete in the 100-meter race in the 2021 Olympics scheduled for Tokyo, Japan.
The Games of the XXXII Olympiad will begin on Friday, July 23 and go until Sunday, August 8, 2021.
Emanuel, who had commenced studies in Agriculture at UG, was handpicked in 2016 by the University of Guyana’s Sports Coordinator, Ms. Lavern Fraser, to attend the University of the West Indies (UWI), Mona Campus, Annual Track and Field Meet.
At that event the budding athlete did not fail to impress.
According to Ms. Fraser, the Guyanese team had comprised of six athletes and Emanuel’s performance stood out and was recognised by UWI’s Mona Campus’ coach Mr. Keery-Lee Rickets.
Upon Emanuel’s return to Guyana, UWI Mona Campus offered the young and promising athlete a partial scholarship to pursue his studies and develop his athletic skills.
“After Mr. Rickets saw Emanuel’s performance, he put forward a proposal to me, he offered to provide him with a partial scholarship that would cover his boarding, lodging, meals and stipend,” Ms. Fraser recalled.
She further explained: “UG had to cover his tuition, Emanuel also had to go through the application process and meet the requirements to attend the University. Once that was taken care of, things got into play. The National Sports Commission (NSC) was approached and the details of the offer and needs were provided. Though the Commission is not a scholarships body, it was agreed that since it was sports-related, a grant can be provided to UG specifically for the payment of the tuition fees. The monies that were received were transferred directly to UWI, Mona for Emanuel’s tuition.”
Emanuel had gotten a transfer from UG and is now in third year at UWI, Mona, doing sports coaching. He recalled that the transition to training and adjusting to life and studies in Jamaica was easier than expected.
“The transition was easier than I thought it would have been because UWI has a sports system that gives you the advantage to train and get back to classes and so forth,” he said.
The University of Guyana has provided and continues to provide unwavering support to Emanuel over the years as he would have represented the institution in numerous track and field events.
The confident athlete expressed elation at having the opportunity to represent his country at the 2021 Tokyo Olympics.
“Wow, firstly, it wasn’t a goal I thought I would achieve, but to be going to represent Guyana is a privilege. It means the world to me. I want to thank my parents, Ms. Fraser and UG for introducing me back to track and field and providing the springboard for me to prove myself on the world stage. This would not have been possible without them,” he noted ahead of his departure for Tokyo.
Ms. Fraser said: “I am really happy, that through UG, Emanuel was afforded the opportunity and he has made good use of it, and now he can call himself an Olympian, and the University of Guyana can say that they provided the springboard for him to get there.”
The Sports Coordinator noted that UG is currently working on a sports policy which will pave the way for students to be highly successful at both sports and academics at the same time.
Ms. Fraser took the opportunity to urge prospective students with a passion for sports and academics to enroll for a programme at UG since the opportunities for success are endless.
Presently, Emanuel is training under the guidance of his coach Mr. Keery-Lee Rickets. He is confident that he has what it takes to shine on the world stage.
The Chancellor, Prof. Edward Greene, Vice-Chancellor, XI, Prof. Paloma Mohamed Martin; Deputy Vice-Chancellors, Dr. Emanuel Cummings (Academic Engagement) and Dr. Melissa Ifill (Institutional Advancement); and the entire Senior Management Team, Faculty and Staff of the University of Guyana extend best wishes to Emanuel and the entire Guyana delegation competing in the Olympics. (University of Guyana Press Release)