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  • Aussie Olympians unleashed to inspire students in NSW schools


    Olympic athletes will deliver crucial lessons for high school students across NSW in a new program launched today.

    “Olympics Unleashed” will operate for the next two years with more than 100 athletes delivering face to face lessons aimed at improving students’ ability to set goals, overcome challenges and build self-esteem.

    The $1.4 million program is jointly funded by the NSW Government and the Australian Olympic Committee.

    Olympians Jess Fox (Canoe/Kayak), Aidan Roach (Water Polo) and Matt Shirvington (Athletics) joined Premier Gladys Berejiklian, Minister for Sport Stuart Ayres and AOC CEO Matt Carroll to launch the program at Cranebrook High School.

    The program, aimed at year nine students, is open to every secondary school in New South Wales, giving more than 85 000 students across 850 schools the opportunity to learn from Olympic athletes. Schools can sign on from today.

    AOC Chief Executive Officer Matt Carroll said Olympians have unique stories of hard work, goal-setting and resilience.

    “Teachers have told us that having an Olympian in the classroom telling the story of their journey is a real reminder of what you can achieve when you work hard towards your goals, making their success a touchable reality,” Mr Carroll said.

    “Olympians have inspiring stories that go beyond their sport. They bring to life the importance of finding what drives you, setting goals and working towards them.

    “Importantly, they talk about how success is almost never a straight road, that overcoming failure is learnt along the way - lessons every student can use in their own lives.

    More than 100 Olympians and athletes aspiring for Tokyo 2020 and Beijing 2022 will be trained by communications and education professionals, with visits rolling out from Term 2, 2019.

    “The AOC is committed to use the spirit of the Olympics and Australian Olympians to inspire NSW youth to be their best,” Mr Carroll said. “In the classroom, on the sporting field, and in their personal lives.”

    “We thank the New South Wales Government, the Premier, Minister Stokes and Minister Ayres for their initiative and support in delivering Olympics Unleashed into NSW schools.”

    Multiple world champion and dual Olympic medallist Jess Fox is excited to help inspire students across her home state.

    “I can’t wait to start visiting schools with Olympics Unleashed to share my journey with students. I found my passion in sport but most important is that you find a passion in something,” Fox said.

    “Being able to set goals, working out steps to achieve them and overcoming challenges is so important for all of us. Olympians understand this really well and we are keen to pass these lessons on.

    “It’s fantastic the Unleashed program will coordinate visits around athletes’ training and competition, so we can get face-to-face with students around the state while still maintaining our high-performance schedules.”

    Ms Berejiklian said athletes like Jessica and Aidan are inspirational and set a great example for kids.

    “They show that if you set goals and work hard, you can achieve your dreams,” Ms Berejiklian said.

    “Olympics Unleashed will give students a chance to learn from one of the 100 past, present or aspiring Olympians who are involved with the program.”

    Olympics Unleashed will also provide schools with lesson plans with each visit, that will reinforce the athletes’ messages and align with the curriculum.

    Schools can register for the program now and find out more information at

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