College Students Go for the Gold in Rio

Assistant Editor, Carnegie Communications

Aug   2016



The Summer Olympics closing ceremony goes down tomorrow in sunny (crazy) Rio. And among the athletes celebrating the past two weeks of physical achievement are more than a few current college students...

Some college students will get to add “Olympian” to their résumés when they return to campus this fall. Along with Michael Phelps, Serena Williams, and other famous record setters, many student-athletes traveled to Rio de Janeiro for this year’s Summer Olympics.  

Over 150 current student-athletes competed in 15 different sports, the majority in swimming and athletics (track & field) according to The University of California, Berkeley sent the most, with 13 current Golden Bears in attendance. Many incoming and former student-athletes participated as well, for a total of 941 NCAA athletes representing 91 countries.

Most members of Team USA have had experience with their sports in college, with 418 of the more than 555 American athletes being current, former, or incoming student-athletes at NCAA schools. This included Nathan Adrian, who swam at UC Berkeley, and Kerri Walsh Jennings, who played volleyball at Stanford University.

In addition to competing, some students got the chance to report from the sidelines in Brazil. Twenty-five students from the University of Memphis and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill interned with Rio’s Olympic Organizing Committee. The internships were unpaid, but students were provided accommodations and meals while helping cover the Games for the Olympic News Service. Students from Ithaca College, Howard University, and many other schools also participated in internships with NBC and other media outlets, helping log results, edit footage, and more.

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