UD students represent USOC at sports festival

10:39 a.m., July 31, 2007--Brenna Davis and Jon Schorah, both junior sport management majors at the University of Delaware, have been selected by the U.S. Olympic Committee (USOC) to attend the Aphrodisias-Laokikiea International Youth Sport, Culture and Art Festival being hosted by the National Olympic Committee of Turkey from Aug. 4-12 in Denizli, Turkey.

The aim of the program is to develop active synergy between the worlds of art and sport and to bring together young people from all over the world. Sixty students representing 30 national Olympic committees will be in attendance.

Along with programs associated with the Olympic movement, the students will travel to ancient sites at Aprodisias, Laodikeia and Ephesus and will participate in cultural presentations, activities and discussions.

"Going to Turkey to participate in the festival will be the opportunity of a lifetime and I am so honored to get to be a part of it and to represent the USOC,” Davis said. “I have always loved the Olympics, and I hope to one day pursue a career involving international sport in some way. I am so excited to learn more about Turkey, the Olympics and Olympic movement and to interact with people from all different countries."

The working relationship Matthew J. Robinson, associate professor of sport management and director of UD's International Sport Institute, has developed with the Turkish Olympic Committee and the USOC led to the students being made aware of the opportunity.

“The secretary general of the Turkish national Olympic committee, Nese Gundogan, is a good friend and I have been fortunate to form a positive relationship with the Carolina Bayon, director of International Cooperation and Policy for the USOC through several previous and future international initiatives, so they were both very interested in having University of Delaware students be apart of the program,” Robinson said. “I am very excited for the students and the University to represent the U.S. Olympic movement at this international event. I know Brenna and Jon will represent themselves, the University and the U.S. Olympic movement in a very positive manner while having an incredible educational and life experience.”

The students' activities are being funded by the National Olympic Committee of Turkey, and the travel to Turkey is being covered by a grant from UD's Center for International Studies and the Department of Health, Nutrition and Exercise Sciences.

“UD's Center for International Studies just does an incredible job of supporting these life changing experiences for students. I am sure this will be another. I also appreciate the continued support of global initiatives from the College of Health Sciences and the Department of Health, Nutrition and Exercise Sciences,” Robinson said.

Article by Neil Thomas