Happy New Year, Inner Circle friends! No, I am not talking about the University of Oregon winning the Rose Bowl (Congratulations and Go Ducks! It was a great game, which I enjoyed attending and celebrating with many prominent UO business graduates and friends). Instead, the more directly relevant victory for the Lundquist College of Business I highlight this month is the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) between our renowned Warsaw Sports Marketing Center and the Singapore Sports Council (SSC).
SSC is actively positioning Singapore as Asia's top destination for professional sports and is nearing completion of a state-of-the-art sports complex that is a testament to its ambitions. The five-year MOU between our Warsaw Center and SSC aims to strengthen Singapore’s capabilities in sports business and administration tied to this new complex and more.
The partnership covers everything from sports-oriented study programs at the UO for Singaporean students, opportunities for Oregon MBA students affiliated with the Warsaw Center to work on a variety of projects in Singapore through internships and other experiential learning programs, and training for Singapore's high-level sports officials, "This is a win-win situation for everyone involved," said Paul Swangard, the Center's managing director. "While the Singapore Sports Council leverages the Warsaw Center's resources and connections, our students gain a unique opportunity to play key roles in developing a multifaceted sports industry on a level that is truly global."
We are thrilled with the agreement. It's a wonderful opportunity that will significantly advance the Lundquist College of Business's position and awareness in Asia.
On a related note, the Warsaw Center is now preparing for its second annual Jim Warsaw and Annalee Thurston Dinner, Auction, and Award Gala and Tennis ProAm. The event is held in conjunction with the BNP Paribas Open in southern California and last year featured appearances by Billie Jean King, Kim Clijsters, Marion Bartoli, Ana Ivanovich, and Bud Collins. The event raised more than $60,000 for the college's Women in Sports Business scholarship endowment, dedicated to women pursuing careers in sports business.
This event is picking up momentum and further advancing the Warsaw Center's reputation and our student's connections to the sports industry. In fact, Stacey Allaster, chairman and CEO of the Women’s Tennis Association and recipient of the Warsaw-Thurston Award at last year's event, will be an executive in residence at the college in late January, meeting with students and proposing new initiatives to advance women in sports business.
Registration for this year's Warsaw-Thurston Award Gala, March 17 -18, is still open for those interested in attending. This year’s award honoree will be Micky Lawler, head of Octagon’s Tennis division.
On top of all this, the Warsaw Center is hosting its first Research Conference in Sport Marketing. With a "Focus on Sponsorship" theme, the event couldn't be better timed, taking place in Portland, June 21-22, just before the Olympic Trials get underway in Eugene. The conference will draw top researchers as well as practitioners pioneering new approaches to sports sponsorships and activations. Anders Sundt Jensen, Mercedes-Benz Cars’ vice president of brand communications, will keynote, and an industry panel will discuss measurement of sponsorship outcomes. Conference registration is open until February 29, 2012.
As you can see, the University of Oregon's connections and reputation for sports and sports business are growing and creating new opportunities for students, businesses, researchers, and alumni.
Together, we are a great team.
Cornelis A. "Kees" de Kluyver
Dean and James and Shirley Rippey Distinguished Professor