Prospective sport management professionals from The University of Alabama had an opportunity to interact with the nation’s sport managers during a graduate-level, interim travel course at the United States Olympic Committee headquarters. Thanks to these students – Aminda Jakob, Collett Cogliano and Valyncia Johnson — for documenting their learning adventures.
Day Five - Aminda Jakob
Thursday means we're in the home stretch! On one hand, I am exhausted. On the other hand, I never want to leave.
The morning began with our group presentations. They went very well! Both groups were well-prepared with great ideas, and handled questions like champs. I'm proud of all of us.
After our presentations, we heard from Sport Performance. Sport Performance is focused on how Team USA can get better--which, in this world, always means winning more medals. Julie Miller showed us a very specific example of changes they made to one sport's team, and how that impacted them in a big way (more medals). It was really cool to hear about how little changes made such big differences.
Following Sport Performance, we heard from Cindy Stinger, who runs the US Olympians and Paralympians Association ("Once an Olympian, always an Olympian; never former, never past"). This was everyone's favorite presentation, because she just told us really interesting stories about her time as an Olympian, and about her endeavors to keep Olympians involved in the Movement even after they're done with their sport.
We had our last sport experience--Judo. Two of the Team USA coaches showed us all kinds of Judo moves--they are all unbelievable! We then had the chance to try it out for ourselves. Everyone had so much fun! We got to throw the instructors, and we had them throw us--and we threw each other. I think we could have kept that up for hours.
Our last educational session was Athlete Safety. They discussed SafeSport and all of the things the USOC is doing to combat abuse in sport--topics that are incredibly important and incredibly timely. While it was daunting to hear the scope of the problem, it was encouraging to hear all that's being done to work on it.
We finished off our week with a trip to the Broadmoor, a very famous hotel, and then to the Golden Bee, a classic English pub and piano bar. It was wonderful to just get to hang out with everyone and celebrate an incredible week. We leave in the morning, as much as I don’t want to.
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