Last week we were able to announce the exciting news that we have received approval from the US Olympic Committee to become an Olympic Training Site. The prospect of having Olympic hopefuls training with us really is exciting. In my mind the Olympics still represents the pinnacle of athletic achievement - higher than the professional level. Elite, by it's very definition, is rare.
Weightlifting will be the first sport to be with us here. Weightlifting coaches Christian Carter and Tim McInnis deserve a lot of credit for the work they have already done to make the current club successful, and this designation will help their work impact at a higher level. The Olympic Training Site designation also opens the door to work with other NGBs in the future.
If you check out any of the news reports and articles on this announcement, you will hear of the tremendous amount of work that my bosses / mentors / friends; Meg Stone, Dr. Mike Stone, and Dr. Mike Ramsey have put into this project. This has taken years of blood, sweat, and tears, and they deserve every accolade and piece of credit that they receive.
There have also been many other people that have contributed massively to this project, and to them we all wish to pass on thanks. Heads have been stuck out above the parapet, so to speak, to help us with the formation of both the Center of Excellence, and the Olympic Training Site.
President Emeritus Dr. Paul Stanton made a huge commitment of 10 scholarships while he was still at the helm of the university and this cannot be overlooked. ETSU's new president, Dr. Brian Noland has been very positive and supportive of us, but I feel his role in helping us has only just begun. Every time that I have heard Dr. Noland speak, I have heard word "excellence". Excellence is something that we care a lot for here and is more than just part of our name. When ever we train athletes, test and monitor athletes, teach, conduct research, or hold events, we strive for excellence. The moment that we, as sport scientists, stop doing that, we will be in trouble. "Excellence" and "elite" go very well together and that is what we are all about here.
While the recent news and designation is very exciting, we will, of course, carry on with the extensive work we are doing with ETSU's athletic teams, the local sporting community, as well as organizations further afield. We strive to ensure excellence can impact these athletes and teams also.
Some reports on the designation:
Johnson City Press