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Professor named as head of National Academy of Sports 

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Prof. Josephine Joy Reyes, the leader of the country’s breakthrough sports talent-identification program and Philippine Sports Commission’s (PSC) Sports Physiology Unit head, will direct the soon-to-rise National Academy of Sports, according to a report by Philippine News Agency.

Reyes, who spearheaded the testing manual creation of the Sports Mapping Action Research Talent Identification (SMART ID) and has been serving the PSC’s Medical Scientific Athletes Services (MSAS) for 27 years, was chosen as NSA executive director from a roster of experts in the field of grassroots sports development.

“I just want to deliver. I just want to perform. I just want to serve. I know it’s gonna be a big task because remember, this is not just a simple department. It’s not a simple unit but we are talking about a school system,” Reyes said.

Reyes was appointed by the NAS’ board of trustees headed by the Department of Education (DepEd) Secretary Leonor Briones, co-chair William Ramirez of the Philippine Sports Commission, Philippine Olympic Committee President Abraham Tolentino, and Commission on Higher Education (CHED) Chairman Prospero de Vera.

“It is an honor on the PSC’s part that someone who has been in the field of sports for so long with the PSC and helped in the development of grassroots sports will take a key role in NAS. As the future home of our budding sportsmen, it will help that the Executive Director is brilliant, competent, and with good character,” Ramirez said.

A former athlete herself, Reyes’ experience in the field is fueled by the commitment to improve the athletic performance of the national team.

“The reason why my heart is in this field and in PSC is because ang passion ko nasa atleta. Naging atleta rin ako ng (of my passion to athletes. I was a former member of) national team. I’m really on the side of development, looking at their progress and performance,” Reyes said.

As executive director, Reyes will be responsible for the NAS’s administration and operation of the campus. She believes that producing world-class athletes is the main reason for the launching of the NAS and that education is important for the youth.

Supported with adequate facilities and funding, young Filipinos can develop their talent and potential and be motivated to excel in sports.

“We want them to excel also in academics at the same time, excelling in sports. Hindi lang sa sports, kailangan magkaroon din sila ng balance para may future rin sila (Not only in sports, they need balance so that they have future) while staying in the national team and in the future,” she said.

At present, Reyes continues to conduct virtual consultations with national athletes at home to ensure their physical and mental well-being.

President Rodrigo Duterte on July 9, 2020 signed Republic Act 11470 establishing the NAS that will serve as educational facility for student-athletes.

Under the law, the NAS is tasked to implement a secondary education program that is integrated with a special curriculum on sports to help young Filipino athletes develop further their sporting skills.

RA 11470 grants full scholarship to qualified student-athletes.

The main campus of the NAS will be established at the newly constructed New Clark City Sports Complex in Capas, Tarlac.

The NAS will be attached to DepEd. 

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