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05 July 2016 | in Education, Forum

FISU Forum 2016 officially declared open



MONTPELLIER - On Monday, 4 July, the 2016 FISU Forum was officially opened. During the next seven days university sports representatives from all over the world will meet in Montpellier, France to exchange ideas, network, and discuss the educational values of sport.

The Opening Ceremony at Corum Palais des Congrès was hosted by Arnaud Richard, the President of the local Organising Committee, who welcomed all participants to the Southern French city. He then introduced Dr. Verena Burk, FISU First Assessor and chair of the Education Committee. In her welcoming speech Burk referred to a quote by Nelson Mandela: “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” She emphasised the values education transports through sport like and subsequently directly approached the audience: “I hope you may learn from the Forum the sense of peaceful exchange.”

Further speeches by Fabien Abert, the Deputy Major of Montpellier, and French University Sports Federation (FFSU) President Jean-François Sautereau addressed the city of Montpellier and its universities as an open-minded and sportive location rich in sports and educational history. Sauterau: “I would like to thank the city of Montpellier, the French Ministry of Higher Education and Research and Minister Najat Vallaud-Belkacem for their help on this event.”

FISU President Matytsin

It was then FISU President Oleg Matytsin’s great pleasure to officially declare open the 2016 FISU Forum after stating in his speech that today’s sports more than ever needs leaders to educate people. “Universities are the key to our success in modern society, they have a positive influence on us,” Matytsin said, “This Forum is special because the Organising Committee allows us to use locations at two universities and France is also home to the Olympic movement and the ideas of Pierre de Coubertin.” The FISU President added: “We’re proud to welcome you in Montpellier. I want to say thank you to the city, administration, FFSU and the regional committee of university sports and I wish everyone a productive and fruitful Forum.

The protocol part of the Opening Ceremony was illustrated by two traditional performances of the local musicians of Les Tambours du Père Ned and videos presenting the FISU Forum, the educational institutions of Montpellier, the French University Sports Federation and the Montpellier itself to the audience. The Ceremony was concluded with presentations of guest speakers Alexander Schischlik, Chief of Youth and Sport at UNESCO, and Agata Dziarnowska, Policy Officer of the Sport Unit in the European Commission. The speeches were followed by lunch at Maison des Relations Internationales.


Max Länge, Media Intern