By Michelle Brutlag Hosick
Delise O’Meally, NCAA director of governance and international affairs, has been named vice president of the Organización Deportiva Universitaria Panamericana, one of the five regional organizations founded by the international governing body for university sport, Federation Internationale du Sport Universitaire.
ODUPA conducted its general elections at an August meeting in Shenzhen, China, where the 2011 World University Games were played. O’Meally will serve four years as vice president of its board.
Earlier this year, O’Meally also was elected to a four-year term as vice president for the United States International University Sport Federation, which is the United States governing body within FISU. The NCAA is a member of the USIUSF, and O’Meally’s position with that group led to her election to ODUPA board.
O’Meally, who played tennis at Morgan State, grew up in Jamaica and credits her own experience as an international student-athlete with sparking her desire to work in this area.
“My interest in this field stems from my own experiences as an international student-athlete and the value that I believe exists whenever you get people of varying cultures and beliefs interacting,” O’Meally said. “Sports competition has long been hailed as a means to transcend cultural differences and bring people together, providing a universal language through which to communicate hopes, dreams, beliefs and values.”
The increasingly global nature of higher education requires the NCAA to be prepared to engage internationally to meet the needs of its membership, O’Meally believes.
“It is my goal to build relationships within these organizations that will provide opportunities for our student-athletes, as well as our member institutions as they globalize,” she said.