Students and advisers take part in Team USA Olympic Media Summit

By Kait Buck | BSU at the Games

Students and advisers from BSU at the Games will join national media, First Lady Michelle Obama and some of the most well known Olympians when they travel to Dallas May 12 through 15 for a unique opportunity to attend the United States Olympic Committee (USOC) 2012 Team USA Media Summit.

Athletes answer questions at a past Team USA Media Summit. Photo courtesy: USOC

USOC has hosted the Media Summit each Olympic year since 1988 as an opportunity for journalists to conduct interviews and photo sessions with Team USA’s top Olympic and Paralympic hopefuls. The three-day event includes press conferences, roundtables and special television and radio interview sessions. The USOC expects approximately 120 athletes to participate in this year’s summit.

Among the participants are former Olympic gold medalists such as 16-time swimming medalist Michael Phelps. Several athletes whom BSU at the Games team members are in contact with for stories will also be in attendance, including David Boudia (Diving), Mary Killman (Synchronized Swimming), Kayla Harrison (Judo), Alexander Massialas (Fencing), medalist Tim Morehouse (Fencing), Eric Shanteau (Swimming) and Errol Spence (Boxing).

First Lady Michelle Obama also will attend to launch her Let’s Move! initiative to solve the problem of childhood obesity. She is collaborating with the USOC to use the inspiration of the Games as a call to action for a healthy, active lifestyle for American children.

BSU at the Games advisers Ryan Sparrow and Chris Taylor will travel to Dallas with a group of five students—sophomore Emily Barker, telecommunications; junior Josh Blessing, journalism and telecommunications; junior Pat Boylan, telecommunications; sophomore Brandon Pope, journalism and telecommunications; and senior Emily Thompson, magazine journalism. Taylor, Blessing and Barker have already arrived in Dallas for advance production work on stories prior to the summit.

“I’m hoping to boost my interviewing skills and do some networking at this conference,” Pope said. “I’m also looking forward to taking in the atmosphere of a big-time sports-media event. We’ll be shoulder to shoulder with the big names in journalism.”

Pope is covering Team USA Fencing athletes Massialas and Morehouse and hopes to speak with them at the event.

“This is a relationship business, and we will have a tremendous opportunity to cultivate existing relationships and build new ones while in Dallas,” said Taylor, BSU at the Games sports team adviser. “I am excited to represent Ball State, our program and our students at a national media event like this.”

Follow the event through the eyes of our staff on Twitter @bsuatthegames and Visit our website for stories, blogs and photos from the summit.

For an event schedule and full list of participating athletes, visit the USOC website.


Kait Buck is a senior public relations and history major at Ball State University. Follow Kait and the BSU team at @keightbuck@bsuatthegames and

Author: ColleenSteffen

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