The campus of the Russian International Olympic University (RIOU) is to be inaugurated in Sochi, the host city of the next Winter Olympics, on September 16. On this day the first students of the unique Master of Sport Administration programme coming from 13 countries will arrive to the campus. Sergey Bubka, IOC Executive Board member, IAAF Vice president and Ukrainian NOC president, will become one of the lecturers of the MSA programme. Ukrainian ex-pole vault great has already worked with RIOU as an expert for the short-term educational course in October 2011; while in February 2013 Mr Bubka as a President of Ukrainian NOC signed the Memorandum of Cooperation with RIOU rector Lev Belousov.
Sport science and education are to be basic priorities for the development of the Olympic Movement, says Sergey Bubka. «Sport has become an integral part of the human society which is rapidly changing. Sport is a very special area which involves millions of people and huge resources for promoting ideas of the healthy active lifestyle, peace and fair play. This area demands special knowledge in numerous fields starting from medical science and going to logistics and brand management.
The opening of the Russian International Olympic University is an extremely important event not only for the Eastern European region, but also for the whole world. It is comparable to the opening of the first universities in mediaeval Europe, which basically initiated the Renaissance. Today, by gathering a vast array of knowledge on the subject of Olympic sports in RIOU and the best practitioners in this area – from top-managers to coaches – we are educating a new generation of experts, people who will professionally manage this area. I look forward to the opening of the campus and the first lectures at RIOU. This is the beginning of the successful long journey".
Lev Belousov said: "We are very thankful to Sergey Bubka for his support and the praise of the activities of our university. We highly appreciate his openness and desire to pass his unique experience to the future generations. Our students will have a real opportunity to communicate with this legendary person, great sportsman and a successful administrator in the Olympic movement".
The Russian International Olympic University was founded in October 2009. The main educational product is a one year RIOU MSA ("Master of Sports Administration") programme.