The United States Sports Academy is working with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to develop a new Olympic Values Education Program (OVEP) that could be delivered online across the world.
Academy President and CEO Dr. Thomas P. Rosandich (left) and Dr. Norbert Mueller, professor at Mainz University in Germany, hold a bronze bust of Pierre de Coubertin, the founder of the Modern Olympic Games, in late November at International Olympic Committee meetings in Amsterdam.
Also because the father of the modern Olympic Games, Pierre de Coubertin, would be celebrating his 150th birthday this coming year, the Academy is discussing an online program paying tribute to his life and work to establish the Olympic Movement. The IOC is planning to hold a worldwide essay competition asking contestants to write about Coubertin, which the Academy has offered to help put online to the world’s Olympic Committees. Essay winners would receive a bronze bust of Coubertin.
Five years ago, the Academy and the IOC developed an online OVEP program. Dr. Tomas Sithole, the Director of the Department of International Cooperation and Development of the IOC, visited the Academy’s Daphne, Ala., campus in early November to discuss revamping the course. He met with Academy President and CEO Dr. Thomas P. Rosandich, who also sits on the IOC’s Commission for Culture and Olympic Education that is overseen by Sithole. That commission advises the IOC on the promotion of culture and Olympic education and supports the IOC programs and activities related to the education of youth through sport.
OVEP was further discussed during a special meeting at the 8th edition of the IOC World Conference on Sport, Culture and Education Nov. 25-27 in Amsterdam, which Dr. Rosandich attended. It was decided that the Academy would redevelop the current version of OVEP for worldwide distribution.
Sithole says he would like to see OVEP reach even more nations across the globe in the future.
“We want to engage young people across the world and promote sport education and Olympic values,” says Sithole, who visited the Academy after attending the United Nations for talks about using sport to enhance the development of youth and peace.
In Amsterdam at the IOC meetings, Dr. Rosandich held talks with Dr. Norbert Mueller, professor at Mainz University in Germany and president of the Pierre de Coubertin Society. Dr. Mueller has written a book on Pierre de Coubertin, the founder of the modern Olympic Games, and donated copies to the United States Sports Academy’s library. Those discussions led to plans for creating an online program paying tribute to Coubertin’s success in reestablishing the Olympic Games.
Coubertin was born in Paris on Jan. 1, 1863. Beginning in 1890, Coubertin worked to start up the Olympic Games again. After a failure in 1892, he organized the International Athletics Congress in Paris in 1894, after which the IOC was created and the modern Olympic Games were born. Coubertin then took over as IOC President and held this position until 1925, when he became Honorary President for life.