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Sijainti: Pääsivu Uutiset Sports Science Winter School culminates with playful Winter Olympics

Sports Science Winter School culminates with playful Winter Olympics

tekijä: Anitta Kananen Viimeisin muutos torstai 25. tammikuuta 2018, 12.22
International Winter School in Sport Sciences has become a well-known concept in the partner universities of JYU. The program is organised by the Faculty of Sport and Health Sciences at the University of Jyväskylä and this year it gathered over 50 Sport Management students from 14 different countries.

– During two intense weeks, students have examined current issues related to sport – for example equality, social inclusion and marketing. With the help of a variety of professionals, future challenges and possible solutions were worked on in small multicultural groups. Students impress us every year with their ideas, tells Senior Researcher Anna-Katriina Salmikangas from JYU.

Vilja Sipilä, kuva Birgitta Kemppainen
Vilja Sipilä is showing one of the group work ideas. The mission was to plan how to support every citizen’s exercising as a hobby. The solution was a webpage which works like a voting advice application. The application could give recommendations of sports according to personal information like preferences and location.

The multidimensional topics have been interesting but also challenging. During the first week students concentrated especially on professional football as an example of equality and inequality and as a tool for social inclusion.

– The gap between men and women is especially pronounced in marketing budgets, salaries and old stereotypes. Fortunately, some positive changes can be also seen. Sponsors have started to support women and women’s football is shown more on television than before, according to Bente Ovédie Skoggvang from the Norway Inland University of Applied Sciences.

Winter School students were able to introduce their ideas and practices to convince the sponsors.

– Group work and presentations give valuable practice for future employment. This year we had a great number of Chinese participants. I believe the upcoming Beijing Winter Olympics in 2022 is one reason why there is a special interest in this field, Salmikangas believes.

International networking and new experiences

During the second week, students focused especially on sport marketing and climate change. One of the lecturers was Petri Ruohonen, the Marketing Director of Jokerit Hockey Club. Students and lecturers had a possibility to watch ice-hockey in Synergia Arena. For many this was the first time at a live hockey game.

– The third study module in the program is focused especially on practicing winter sports. We also provide free time activities. Students have enjoyed e.g. cross-country skiing, snowboarding, ice-hockey and hiking, says Salmikangas.

At the end of the Winter School in Sport Sciences, students competed in a playful Winter Olympics in Laajavuori. Many students got to know each other so well that they will continue to keep in touch.

– This has been a refreshing start for the semester. I enjoyed the current themes and the international and social aspects of this program. I have gained many new perspectives, tells Vilja Sipilä, who studies at the Faculty of Sport and Health Sciences at the University of Jyväskylä.

Some students got to experience winter sports and the Finnish university education system for the first time. This year even the weather favored the participants, who came as far away as Australia and China. Long Wei studies in Beijing and for him participation in the program made one more dream come true.

– Last year I was studying in Southern Europe, but I didn’t have a chance to experience Northern Europe or Finland. That’s why I wanted to come to Finland. Also, I like football a lot. I have been very impressed by all the topics, lecturers and other students, Wei describes.

The Winter School in Sports Sciences is becoming more popular every year.
– We will do our best, so that everyone would have an equal opportunity to take part in the Winter School in Sports Sciences. We will continue to focus on the most current themes with the help of skilled lecturers and stakeholders, promises Hanna Vehmas, Senior Lecturer at the Faculty of Sport and Health Sciences.

Text: Birgitta Kemppainen, photos Birgitta Kemppainen and Petteri Kivimäki

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