Rugby League’s position at the forefront of career development in professional sport has been recognised with NRL Specialist Careers Coach Jane Lowder named the Career Development Association of Australia Practitioner of the Year.
Lowder is the author of the NRL’s CareerWise program, which assists players to make well-informed future career choices as well as help them develop the skills and knowledge required to successfully manage their ongoing careers in a rapidly changing labour market.
“Jane’s award highlights the significance of the career training programs Rugby League is providing for players across the game,” said NRL CEO, Mr Dave Smith.
“On behalf of everyone in the game, I want to congratulate Jane on this wonderful achievement.
“It is a fitting reward for the amazing work Jane has done in implementing the CareerWise and career transition programs that are really changing the education and welfare culture in the game.”
Lowder, the founder of Max Coaching, accepted the honour at the Career Development Association of Australia Awards at Sydney’s Sheraton on the Park Hotel last night.
“I am very honoured to have received this award,” Lowder said today.
“The NRL's commitment to embracing latest best practice and quality standards in career development speaks to the professionalism of the welfare and education team and their dedication to caring for player well-being and success both on and off the field.
“The peak body for careers, the CDAA, recognises the significance of this NRL initiative as a sign-post for other sporting bodies.”
The NRL CareerWise program, which Lowder created with input from careers and education specialists including Marijke Wright, Rosemary Sainty and Jane Caro, is designed to have players vocationally active and balanced in life.
The program assists elite players from U16s through to retiring NRL players engage with meaningful career exploration activities.
It is designed to enhance a player’s performance in all areas of his life, as the best players have a balanced life because they know this improves their focus and performance on the field.
More than 50 NRL and NRL club welfare and education managers, club career coaches and current and former NRL players have been trained in the delivery of the NRL CareerWise program and have completed or are completing the Certificate IV in Career Development.