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30 April 2018 | in CUSF News, Meetings, FISU, NUSF News

President Matytsin charts university sport's future development with IOC President


The FISU and IOC Presidents confirmed areas of closer collaboration and areas of mutual interest, with the goal of helping athlete succeed – on and off the field of play



LAUSANNE — FISU President Oleg Matytsin met with IOC President Thomas Bach at the IOC offices in the Olympic Capital city to discuss progress the two organisations have been making to enhance opportunities for athletes and within student sport.



Accompanying President Matytsin in the meetings was FISU Secretary General–CEO, Eric Saintrond. The IOC Sports Director, Kit McConnell, also attended the meeting.



Since the IOC initiated Olympic Agenda 2020, the sports world has put significant interest on placing athletes at the heart of the Olympic Movement. One way that the IOC is realising this is by strengthening the level of support that they provide to Olympic athletes, particularly in the areas of personal and career development outside of an athlete's sports career.



As the home of international university sport, FISU has the explicit mission to give opportunities to students through sports and education programmes. This better allows student-athletes to pursue their goals, in and out of the competition arena. President Matytsin and President Bach agreed to further work together to share expertise on their dual career initiatives as the two organisations have such strong shared mutual interests.



As Mr. Bach was two-time Universiade fencing competitor in the 1970s while  studying law at the University of Wurzburg before he went on to win Olympic gold, the leader of the Olympic Movement has experience at FISU events and is one whose personal career is a testament to athletes pursuing a dual career.



“Today we discussed the key challenges within the Olympic Movement related to athlete development and promoting the idea that dual career athletes can reach the highest levels of achievement, as a sportsperson today and as a future leader of our society,” Mr. Matytsin said.


From Left: FISU SG-CEO, Eric Saintrond; FISU President, Oleg Matytsin; IOC President, Thomas Bach; IOC Sports Director, Kit McConnell 

“The skills learned through both endeavours builds transformative and transferrable skills like leadership, accountability and performing well under pressure," Mr. Matytsin added.



During the meeting, the two Presidents opened the discussions with talk about the success of the Taipei 2017 Summer Universiade and FISU’s leading role in further developing its inter-university sports programme. Mr. Matytsin also commended both the IOC and President Bach for their role in the developing peace process on the Korean Peninsula.


Taipei Arena played a central part in the Summer Universiade competitions  

Recognising that sport is not free of challenges, another demanding topic has been – and continues to be – the fight for clean sport. FISU has invested great effort into its anti-doping efforts, which are an integral part of the Summer and Winter Universiades and World University Championship events.


Yekaterina CHUIKINA (KAZ) on the floor routine of artistic gymnastics during Day 2 of the Summer Universiade. Rigorous testing is done at FISU events to protect the integrity of sport and clean athletes. 

To further the work of ensuring clean sport, FISU expressed interest in working with the Independent Testing Agency (ITA). Providing a more robust and independent global anti-doping system to protect clean athletes, ITA was used for the first time during the Olympic Games PyeongChang 2018. On the clean sport education front, the two presidents also discussed the Anti-Doping eTextbook that FISU put together in concert with WADA, a learning module that is in use in numerous university curriculums.



The strategic discussion also touched on the FISU Volunteer Leaders Academy. With the second edition coming in June, this educational forum focused on developing the skillsets of emerging sports management leaders shows the tangible ways that FISU is delivering on its Memorandum of Understanding commitments, as FISU and the IOC develop dual career programmes that complement sports with academic attainment opportunities.


The second edition of the FISU Volunteer Leaders Academy is coming to Kazan, Russia in June. This multi-day event provides over 100 future leaders in sport hands-on experience from FISU, IOC, WADA and local OCs 

With the upcoming Youth Olympic Games being the next major multi-sport event to take place this fall in Buenos Aires, the presidents discussed ongoing preparations for the University Sports House.



With the assistance of the Argentinian National University Sports Federation (FEDUA), FISU will have a prominent place to promote university sports and dual career within the Youth Olympic Centre. Situated beside the YOG Athletes’ Village in the southern district of Buenos Aires, the University Sports House will be right amidst the sports, cultural and entertainment action.



With the Youth Olympic Games coming to Lausanne in 2020 and nearby Lucerne hosting the Winter Universiade in 2021, this innovative partnership could turn into another long-term cooperation between FISU and the IOC.


 Lucerne looks to "Welcome Home" the Winter Universiade to Central Switzerland as the Lucerne 2021 tagline asserts. The event will be the first time the Universiade takes place in the area since Villars hosted in 1962.


“Having officially moved to the Olympic Capital city this past week, at FISU we are set up well to help lead the sports world in developing focused, action-oriented educational programmes and dual career initiatives," Mr. Matytsin said.  "That make a measurable difference in athlete development, for both their sporting and non-sporting careers.”


While the meetings highlighted the close collaboration going on between FISU and the IOC, the sun never sets on projects like these. FISU has been an IOC recognised International Federation since 1961.