Conference explores student impact of 2012

9 April 2010

Darren Kenny (centre) with BU Event Management students Gold medallist Darren Kenny spoke recently at a London 2012 conference organised by BU students.

UK students recently explored the impact that the 2012 Olympic and Paralympics games will have on them and their future at a BU student conference attended by Paralympian Darren Kenny.

The ‘Olympics and Paralympic Values: me, my course and my career’ conference, organised by BU students and held at the University’s Executive Business Centre, explored the impact that the 2012 games will have on young people in terms of their course and future careers.

Organised by a group of BU Event Management students, the successful conference was held on behalf of the Hospitality, Leisure, Sport and Tourism Network (HLST), part of the Higher Education Academy.

Students from across the UK attended the event to hear from speakers closely involved in the games, including Paralympic Cyclist and Gold Medallist Darren Kenny.

Sharing his experiences of the games, Kenny, who was awarded an Honourary Doctorate from BU in November 2009, told his inspirational story of the difficult journey to his success today.

Speakers also included Sarah Kennedy from Team Dorset, who discussed the structure and delivery of the 2012 Olympic Sailing events taking place in Weymouth, and Gareth Smith from Podium – an organisation which aims to maximise the involvement of Further and Higher Education with all aspects of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

The event also included three interactive workshops led by sport and leadership academics from BU and representatives from the Universities South West’s Regional Educational Legacy in Arts and Youth Sport (RELAYS) programme.

Conference organiser and BU Event Management student Charlotte Smart said: “The conference provided delegates with the chance to work together developing their thoughts and opinions of the values and legacies within in-depth discussions.

“As part of the event we had organised a video-booth to capture these thoughts and now hope to release a paper outlining the opinions of students about the values and legacies of the 2012 Games.”

Commending the BU students for their successful event organisation Clive Robertson from the HLST said: “This was an event which tested the skills of the team of BU students who organised it. They deserve gold medals.”

Students focus on community sport

On behalf of RELAYS and The Focus on Communities Using Sport (FOCUS) initiative, 2nd year students from BU’s Sport Management degree were also successful in organising a county-wide festival aimed at promoting sport amongst the local community.

The event, which took place at Bournemouth’s Littledown Leisure Centre, was attended by 250 participants including school children involved in community football projects across the region delivered by Nacro, Youth Services and the Police.

It was supported by many local organisations including Poole Borough Council, Dorset Police, Bournemouth & Poole Youth Services and Active Dorset.

Virginia Bailey RELAY’s co-ordinator based at BU said: “Working closely with RELAYS, the students organised a very professional event that not only provided a well run football tournament for over 250 young people from across the county, but also offered a variety of alternative activities for them to try out, based around sport, education and health.

“The event also gained Inspire Mark, giving it official recognition from the London 2012 organising committee. The students were great advocates for both BU and RELAYS and it is already planned to run the festival in partnership next year.”

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