US collegiate still the best option – Mills
Veteran coach Glen Mills believes the United States collegiate system is still the best option for Jamaica's athletes who want to pursue full-time education while developing their athletic abilities.
Mills said that local universities are not sports oriented and hence their curricula are not structured for student-athletes to train effectively while pursuing their degrees.
"My experience with athletes who are studying here is that they can hardly find time to train, unlike in the States where you can arrange your timetable in order to ensure that you can meet the training time and get time to compete. It is much easier in the States," he explained.
Mills, who is in charge of the Racers Track Club, which is based at the University of the West Indies, Mona, says this plus other reasons have caused a resurgence in student-athletes who want to take up scholarships in the States again.
"There is still also the mystique of going overseas. And those who are academically inclined would be more suited to go abroad because the tertiary institutions locally don't have enough variety in terms of career paths and they are not sports friendly," he said.
In the 1980s and 90s, and before, almost all of the island's top high school talents would seek to further their careers abroad but after the formation of The Racers Track Club, MVP Track and Sprintec athletes have been choosing between staying home and going overseas.