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Patrick Rebakis
Nov 24, 2017

ACU Elite Athletes Take Another Opportunity in Rome, Italy

Nov 24, 2017 by Patrick Rebakis

ACU’s Elite Athlete and Performer Program (EAPP) is using Australian Catholic University’s unique multiple campuses to broaden the academic and athletic horizons for its elite student athletes and performers internationally.

In January 2018, the ACU Rome Centre will host two EAPP water polo players as they undertake further academic studies. ACU students will be able to train intensively with Italian National League Water Polo Club, SIS Roma, coached by the legendary Pierluigi Formiconi.

These students will have an international study experience while continuing to develop their athletic skills with one of the best water polo clubs in the world and undertake community work as part of their studies with the Sant’ Egidio in Italia community in Trastevere supporting the University’s community programs.

The opportunity comes after Director of Student Engagement and Services, Paul McJannett and Ceran Nilsen, the EAPP Co-ordinator recently visited Rome creating a relationship with the Director of Sport at SIS Roma, Giacomo Esposito.

The training program will include sessions in the famous marble pool called Piscina dei Mosaici at the Forco Italico Complex in Rome, home to the 1960 Olympic Games.  

Recently ACU and SIS Roma signed an MOU and it is expected the program will enhance the student athlete experience, provide student leadership capabilities and improve the athletic skills of each athlete.

With many athletes choosing to leave Australia in hopes of chasing athletic dreams in overseas sporting organisations and college systems, this opportunity provides the best of both worlds.

Professor Anne Cummins, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Students, Learning and Teaching) at ACU is delighted with the development, which enhances student life at the Rome Campus.  “Students at ACU can have an overseas academic experience and continue to train and represent their country without having to forgo their current University degree or committing to years away from home. The progressive outcomes for this program support the elite pathways of Australian National Sporting Organisations by upskilling both physically and academically the EAPP students who study at ACU.”

Professor Pauline Nugent, ACU ‘s Provost said, “This program aligns with the ACU mission of pursuing the intellectual tradition in academics, sports and performing arts, enriched by an offshore experience—all contributors to an outstanding experience for ACU students”.