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Publish date: Feb 17, 2012

NCAA sponsors IOC luncheon to celebrate women in sports

By Marta Lawrence

A luncheon celebrating collegiate women’s athletics and the 40th anniversary of Title IX was sponsored today by the NCAA at the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Conference on Women in Sport—a global conference in Los Angeles attracting more than 600 participants from more than 130 countries. This is the first time the United States has hosted the conference, which occurs every four years.

NCAA President Mark Emmert addressed attendees at the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Conference on Women in Sport.

NCAA President Mark Emmert addressed the attendees in taped remarks welcoming them to the luncheon and thanking them for their commitment to advancing opportunities for women to participate in athletics around the world. “Very few educational experiences surpass the power of sports to develop confidence, leadership, and the expectation that hard work and the opportunity to pursue life's grandest goals can lead to a stronger future for its participants,” he said.

“A society that empowers women and their dreams through education is a stronger, fairer society. As a life-long educator, that is my goal.”

Emmert also took the opportunity to explain the role of the NCAA and the significance of the passage of Title IX 40 years ago in June, calling the law “the most important legal change for girls and women in the United States for participation in sports.”

“The unfulfilled interest of girls and women to benefit from athletics participation changed when Title IX made clear our daughters deserved the chance to pursue a fair chance at their educational and competitive dreams,” said Karen Morrison, NCAA director of gender inclusion.

NCAA director of inclusion Karen Morrison speaks at the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Conference on Women in Sport.

Morrison spoke to the group about the expansive opportunities the NCAA is providing to women for education and sports competition. NCAA Director of International Affairs and Association-Wide Governance Delise O’Meally also discussed the uniqueness of the NCAA model for collegiate competition and the benefits and global-cultural-competence NCAA student-athletes gain through international participation.

The theme of the conference is “Together Stronger: the Future of Sport” and it marks the fifth conference of its kind. Jordan hosted the gathering in 2008, during which participates created an action plan for increasing opportunities for women in athletics. The success of the plan will be assessed by this year’s attendees.

The International Olympic Committee organizes the World Conference on Women and Sport with the objective of analyzing the progress made within the Olympic Movement and identify ways to improve and increase participation of women in the world of sport.  Attendees include the President of the IOC Jacques Rogge, delegates from the United Nations, the United States Olympic Committee and representatives from several international federations, non-governmental organizations and universities.

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