Oregon State University – Cascades (OSU-Cascades) located in Bend, Oregon recently announced plans to add multiple club sports to the campus, including Nordic Skiing.
OSU-Cascades signed an agreement with the Mt. Bachelor Sports Education Foundation to provide coaching for the teams. Former Olympian and World Cup skier Dan Simoneau is the head Nordic coach and will be training and coaching the OSU-Cascades Nordic team. The team will begin competing this winter 2012/13 in United States Collegiate Ski and Snowboard Association sanctioned events across the west including one that will happen in their own backyard at Mount Bachelor.
“This is definitely a starting point,” said Bruce Petersen, who leads the school’s sports task force. “We want to be very good at the club level in Nordic skiing. We see this as a great opportunity for students to extend their ski careers as part of their collegiate experience.”
“As we expand to a four-year university, sports programs will be an important part of attracting students and will add to a rich experience for the student community,” said OSU-Cascades Vice President Becky Johnson.
Snow sports were selected based on their popularity in Central Oregon. Mt. Bachelor is 22 miles from the OSU-Cascades campus in Bend. This means that an athlete has the ability to attend classes in the morning and train in the afternoon. Mt. Bachelor offers one of the longest ski seasons in North America – open from mid-November through the end of May.
A number of Olympic and World Cup-level Nordic athletes have chosen to reside and train in Bend. Bend’s training opportunities and facilities are some of the best in the world. Bend’s outdoor-oriented culture – combined with these training opportunities make it a major draw for these top athletes. In 2012, National Geographic named Bend as one of the “World’s 25 Best Ski Towns.”
Oregon State University – Cascades offers 16 undergraduate majors and three graduate programs, with 25 minors and degree options. The university recently launched a degree in exercise and sport science.