University Post
University of Copenhagen
Independent of management


U of C sets off Olympics weekend

Copenhagen is host to a session of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) this weekend, and the Olympic Congress for the next couple of weeks. The University of Copenhagen had an academic teaser to set off the events

Copenhagen is a bustling, excited mess this week. The IOC session opens Thursday and the guest-list contains names suspiciously similar to those of Oprah Winfrey and Barack Obama, both here to cause traffic jams and push for Chicago to be the host city of the 2016 Olympics.

The U.N. Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon is in town to give a lecture on climate change this Saturday. He is dropping two birds with one stone, and is also saying a few words for the opening of the Olympic Congress the same day.

A couple of days before this all kicks off, the Department of Exercise and Sport Sciences at the University of Copenhagen (U of C) contributed with an academic warm-up for the weeks to come. The University Post went along.

The wider meaning of the Olympics

The U of C had invited a mix of sports-interested academics and professional athletes to discuss the political, social and economic effects of the Olympics.

Among the speakers were Prorector Lykke Friis of the U of C, internationally renowned swimmer Lotte Friis (no relation as far as we know) and Sir Craig Reedie, the former Chairman of the British Olympic Association.

London through the ages

The Department of Exercise and Sport Sciences had also put together a modest exhibition, detailing the progress made between London hosting the Olympics in 1908 and 2012. Photos and text were stuck to boards on one side of the speakers and audience.

The event finished with an entertaining story told by Jesper Frigast, head of The National Olympic Committee at the Sports Confederation of Denmark.

It was the tale of how London became the 2012 Host City.

Jesper Frigast explained that Tony Blair had a panel hired specifically to find out personal information about all the people at the IOC, so he could address them in a considerate and friendly manner.

They did their best to get Blair in the same elevator as IOC members, and even went as far as to close the doors or delay elevators for his competitors, so they would not have the same advantage.

Making a run for it

The audience were spellbound. Sadly, the event was coming to an end, and the Department of Exercise and Sport Sciences needed people to leave. Drastic measures were needed.

On went Aqua’s ‘Around the World’, the volume was cranked up. This reporter ran from the scene, clutching a pear from the fruit bowl.