UK higher education institution Sheffield Hallam University has announced it will be an official supporter of the Tour de France Grand Depart 2014.
The three-day curtain raiser to the road cycling showpiece will take place in the English county of Yorkshire this year and Sheffield Hallam becomes the first ever university to seal such a partnership for the race following an agreement with organiser Amaury Sport Organisation through local tourism body Welcome to Yorkshire.
Students at Sheffield Hallam are set to enjoy a range of benefits from the tie-up, most notably access to 200 volunteering and participatory roles. Sheffield Hallam has an established pedigree in sports research, development and education and has previously provided volunteers for the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games, 2010 Delhi Commonwealth Games and, in greater numbers than any other university, London’s 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
Sheffield Hallam is developing a range of plans across academia, art, design, sport, engineering and events management to activate its Tour de France association, including interactive cycling exhibits and collaborations with schools and colleges across Yorkshire.
“Exclusive volunteering and participation opportunities at the Grand Depart will be excellent additions to the CVs of our students,” Sheffield Hallam’s vice-chancellor Professor Phillip Jones said. “For those who are looking for careers in sport or event management, for example, they will be able to demonstrate that they have put their learning into practice at an international event, demonstrating the skills, knowledge and experience that will make them highly attractive to employers in the future.”