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Aug 06 2016
by Madeleine Williamson

Students Take Their Studies to the Olympics

By Madeleine Williamson - Aug 06 2016

When the Rio de Janeiro Olympics kick off, the athletes won’t be the only ambitious young adults in town. A class from George Washington University will be there too, studying a real-life example of sports management. Their professor, Lisa Delpy Neirotti, has taken students to the Olympics since 1990.

Neirotti attended her first Olympics as a student herself in 1984. 
“I knew how much I learned from being a student at the Olympic Games, and I wanted to offer that same experience to my students,” she told the Chronicle of Higher Education. Students will research tourists’ activities, “collecting data on the use of venues, seating and security.” 

They will interview visitors on why they came to the Olympics and what they’re doing with their time in Rio.

The students’ research in Rio doesn’t just teach them about sports management. It also instructs the International Olympic Committee. The IOC will use students' data to plan future Olympic Games. “IOC have a whole department looking at what happens with the spectator on site,” Neirotti said. Students will learn from the experts while they help them with research. Through a lecture series, they'll hear firsthand about the process of planning the games.

The trip to Rio isn’t the only part of the students’ experience. They completed a course back at GWU. They studied the history of the Olympics, data collection and began drafting term papers. They will complete the term papers after the trip, incorporating their experiences and research.

Wouldn't it be so cool to be in this class??!

Lead image credit: Justin Vidamo on Flickr.

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Madeleine Williamson - DePaul University

Madeleine Williamson is a freshman at DePaul University majoring in journalism and minoring in political science and Spanish. She loves tea, stationery and exploring her new hometown of Chicago.

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