The U’s China Coaches Training Program was recently honored in a special half-time ceremony at the 2019 Pac-12 China Basketball Game.
University of Utah alumni living in China, along with alumni of the China Coaches Training Program, gathered in Shanghai on Nov. 9, 2019, for the event and enjoyed a post-game reception hosted by the Office for Global Engagement.
The combined alumni event is the third U Global Engagement has hosted in Shanghai in connection with the annual China Game. In 2015, the reception was attended by President Pershing and three Utah State Legislators, who participated in the announcement of the U’s partnership with the Pac-12 China Scholarship Council, and the Federation University Sports China to develop the China Coaches Training Program. This year, President Ruth Watkins addressed alumni via video message, offering congratulations on the success of the program and her regrets in being unable to attend in person due to scheduling conflicts.
Since 2015, the China Coaches Training Program has hosted nearly 650 participants at the U and Arizona State University combined. While on campus in the U.S., the coaches participate in training and education programs designed to elevate the rigor and efficacy of their home programs. The collaboration is part of the Pac-12 Global initiative, which sees student-athlete exchanges and sport as a means to “promote goodwill and showcase the Pac-12 and its member institutions around the world.” 2019 marked the fifth Pac-12 China Game and saw Colorado best ASU by 10 points.
Also in attendance for the Shanghai event as a special guest was former Running Ute Mǎ Jiàn, a member of the men’s basketball team from 1993-1995. Jiàn now resides in China and was visibly moved after being presented with signed Utes gear during the alumni reception in honor of his lasting impact.
The event offered an extraordinary opportunity for many U alumni in China to connect and many left making plans to gather more often in the future.
“Connecting with our alumni in China is a great way to see, in person, how much attending the U has positively affected their lives. Our alumni are our best ambassadors and we want to make sure we can help them stay connected with the U and with each other,” said Cheri Daily, director of external relations and global programs in the Office for Global Engagement.
More about the China Coaches Training Program can be found here.
If you are an alum looking to connect with fellow Utes in China via WeChat, contact Cheri Daily at email@example.com.