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25 August 2016 | in NUSF News, Summer Universiade, FISU, Multisports

Student-Athletes shone on Rio Olympic Podium

LAUSANNE - The Rio Olympics are behind us and our member associations continue to inform us about the good results of their teams in these competitions.

FFSU (France) reported that among the 92 student-athletes present within the French delegation, 25 have won an Olympic medal. The French University Sports Federation has also sent its warmest congratulations to the athletes and to the French Olympic Team for its overall performance, marked by a new medal record.

Download the list of French student-athletes here.



We witness the same scenario for Canada with 16 CIS athletes (Canadian Inter-University Sport) who brilliantly won medals at these 2016 Summer Olympics. After more than two weeks of competition, 16 current, former or incoming CIS student-athletes are bringing home medals from the Rio 2016 Olympics.

Former Calgary Dino Erica Wiebe captured gold in women’s wrestling, while Sherbrooke’s Josée Bélanger and ex-Manitoba Bison Desiree Scott won bronze in women’s soccer during the second week of the Summer Games, adding to the 13 CIS medallists from the first nine days.

The 16 athletes account for seven of Canada’s 22 medals in Rio, seven of whom previously attended a Summer Universiade.

In addition, four former non-CIS athletes that have competed at the FISU Games won bronze medals, with Brendon Rodney and Mobolade Ajomale of the 4x100-metre relay team, joining diver Roseline Filion and swimmer Brittany MacLean on the podium.

Trampolinist Rosie MacLennan (Toronto), rower Lindsay Jennerich (Victoria), and cyclists Allison Beveridge (Calgary), Laura Brown (Victoria), Kirsti Lay (Calgary) and Catherine Pendrel (Victoria) also won medals in non-CIS sports.

Overall, 158 athletes with ties to CIS member schools competed at the 2016 Summer Olympics, of which 81 are current, former or future CIS student-athletes.


Download the list of the Canadian student-athletes here.


Finally, our friends from Australian University Sport (AUS Uniroos) had also a nice medal haul.

There were 71 Australian medallists who returned home victorious from Rio. Australia won eight gold medal events, with a total of 82 medals awarded to Australia (including multiple medals to the same athletes). Student-athletes were responsible for 61% of the total medals won across 10 sports - representing the majority of medallists.



It was one of the most successful Olympics for student-athletes in recent history, only outdone by London 2012 in which 63% of the medals distributed were won by student-athletes. Studying and training is becoming the new norm, and is providing a great pathway for Olympians.

Australian University Sport CEO Don Knapp attributed the performance of Australia's student-athletes to the support pathways created by elite student-athlete programmes at Australian universities. “Many of our member universities facilitate dual career education through scholarships which enable student-athletes to pursue elite sporting careers, complete tertiary education and maintain a healthy balance. Research shows student-athletes selected to Australian Olympic teams win a higher percentage of medals on a pro-rata basis – an achievement Australian University Sport and its 42 member universities is very proud of,” Knapp said.


Of the 42 student-athlete medallists, seven were former Australian Uniroos, and three competed most recently in the 2015 Gwangju Summer Universiade. Trap shooter Catherine Skinner (RMIT University) lead the pack collecting a gold medal, one of only eight gold medals for Australia in Rio. Skinner was the flagbearer at the 2015 Summer Universiade. Dane Bird-Smith (The University of Queensland) took home one of only two athletics medals for Australia, walking his way to bronze in the 20km race walk. Anabelle Smith (Australian Catholic University) competed alongside student-athlete Maddison Keeney (The University of Queensland) in synchronised diving and took home a bronze medal.

Once again the FISU Universiade is proving to be a great opportunity for athletes to gain experience and training on the world stage in preparation for the Olympics.

(Source: FFSU, CIS and AUS)