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09 October 2020 | in FISU Healthy Campus

UNIL becomes 40th global university to join FISU Healthy Campus

In the midst of a hearty ‘Jours Santé’ (healthy days) campaign, the University of Lausanne (UNIL) has officially come on board the FISU Healthy Campus programme, becoming the 40th global university to do so.


The FISU Healthy Campus programme was launched 5 months ago, on 12 May 2020 and has steadily gained momentum with major universities from around the world, representing 30 countries and five continents, joining the multi-dimensional programme that aims to improve fitness and wellbeing among the global student community.


HealthyCampus UNIL 1The FISU Healthy Campus team at the UNIL 'Jours Santé' exhibition“It is a great pleasure for us to have UNIL join the FISU Healthy Campus programme,” says FISU Secretary General-CEO Eric Saintrond. “Our cooperation with UNIL started back in 2014 with the Lausanne in Motion festival. In fact, it was two students from UNIL who did their Masters’ thesis on this concept, who were the first to start working on this project for us.”


“That was a first step to showcase health and fitness for all, and from there we developed the concept further into what is now the vast Healthy Campus project,” adds Saintrond.


“UNIL has partnered us closely as a Pilot University in the development of this programme and we are aware of the immense importance UNIL attaches to its sports programme as well as the wellbeing and holistic development of its student community. I am sure UNIL will play an exemplary role in the further development of the FISU Healthy Campus programme.”


UNIL’s sports services programme is a robust one, with 143 different physical activities offered on campus. In 2019, the university clocked 373,084 participations in its university sports programme. The activities range from competitive individual and team sports to yoga and dance sport. With the COVID-19 pandemic, this academic year’s steps are more measured.


“This year the ‘Jours Santé’ fortnight is not exempt from the restrictions imposed by the health crisis,” says Sonia Matthey, the Head of UNIL-EPFL Sports Department and operational manager of the FISU Healthy Campus project. “The objectives this year are therefore to disseminate messages about health to the target audience through infographics at a public exhibition. Despite the constraints imposed by the health crisis, we have also tried to put in place solutions that will allow us to keep a sustainable legacy to the event.”


HealthyCampus UNIL 4Sonia Matthey, the Head of UNIL-EPFL Sports Department“Given the need to fight sedentary lifestyles and associated non-communicable diseases, the fundamental mission of UNIL-EPFL Sports Services is to teach, promote and organise physical activity and sport for students and members of the campus community,” adds Matthey. “Through this Jours Santé exhibition, the participants benefit from information stands, infographics, experiments, testing and initiation sessions to reflective sports practices.”


As is evident, the values and objectives of the ‘Jours Santé’ campaign are closely aligned with those of the FISU Healthy Campus programme. It is befitting then, that UNIL came on board the programme officially, as their two-week event was launched. 


“We have been privileged, from the beginning, to be able to collaborate with FISU on this project,” says Pierre Pfefferle, Director of Sports Services at UNIL-EPFL. “It is certain that the collaboration with an International Federation gives us more credibility and, above all, will bring us teachings that will help us optimise our approach and knowledge.”


The teachings that Pfefferle refers to are available in the global repository of knowledge on the FISU Healthy Campus platform. In addition to helping universities tailor their initiatives and activities, Healthy Campus provides an unmatched database of benchmarking and best practices from universities around the world.


“The Healthy Campus platform works almost like a ‘library’ where universities can find all the information related to what they can do for well-being and quality of life in their campus community,” says Fernando Parente, Director of FISU Healthy Campus and University Relations. “The universities will also know which UN SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals) they are working towards and what their progress is.”


“Above all, the programme will help them promote a culture of continuous improvement and define key performance indicators (KPIs) to achieve their goals,” adds Parente. “This certified international label will thus help them improve their positioning, image and credibility.”


The 15,000-plus students of UNIL now have the opportunity not only to learn about health and wellbeing through the Jours Santé fortnight, but also to be an active part of the FISU Healthy Campus programme, and help their university be among the first to receive this prized certification.

FISU byline Tina



UNIL Flyer Jours santé 2020