SEK Education Group and Copos Skiclub have presented their new International Ski School (ISS), the result of a collaboration agreement between the two. The main goal of this project is for all students to achieve academic, sports and personal excellence. “To be the best in education you have to be with SEK Education Group and to be the best in skiing you have to be with ISS”, said José Javier Hombrados, Sports Director of SEK Education Group and world handball champion and two-time Olympic bronze-medalist, outlining the inspiration behind the project.
The ISS project was presented by Guadalupe Sánchez, Principal of SEK Les Alpes International School; Silvia Monje, President of Copos Skiclub; Ferrán Hernández, Sports Director of the International Ski School; and Miguel Galindo, ski guide Jon Santacana, triple gold medalist in the Paralympic Games and seven times world champion in this modality.
Guadalupe Sánchez has stressed the need “for each student to achieve academic, sporting and personal success”. In addition, she has outlined why SEK-Les Alpes is particularly suited to host a programme of this type. “We have ideal facilities for the study and skiing, with over 15,000 m2 of grounds,” said Sanchez, for whom it is essential “to ensure that students strike a healthy life balance between studies and sports”.
Ferrán Hernández remarked that the main objective is that to offer academic education and sports training that provide authentic life experience and instil values, regardless of sporting successes, with a teaching and coaching staff prepared to work with high-performance students. According to the Director of ISS, the challenge “is to set up a private programme to train skiers with the greatest sporting potential for the Spanish national team”.
Miguel Galindo, on the other hand, spoke from the experience of being a former student of the SEK-Les Alpes and having managed to reach the heights of the sport: “It’s fantastic that there are these programmes that foster academic and sporting excellence.” He also wanted to highlight that “my experience as an athlete in SEK-Les Alpes was fantastic. However, few manage to become elite professionals, so you can’t neglect the academic side in any case, because it is an education that will accompany you throughout your life.”
Guadalupe Sánchez concluded the presentation by saying that “parents are assured that their children will enjoy a life experience, especially those who do not become elite skiers. Our biggest concern is to educate boys and girls as they prepare to be top-level athletes. ”
The International Ski School will start in the upcoming 2019/20 school year and will accompany the student athletes on their way to reach the elite of the international alpine skiing, while they are taught a first-class academic education and receive tailored individual mentoring on their sports career and personal life.
An international standard within four years
ISS aims to consolidate itself as the best national high-performance sports project and an international standard within a period of four years, with the capacity to cater to elite skiers and prepare them to compete for the Royal Spanish Winter Sports Federation (RFEDI) in future winter Olympics.
This new International Ski School will have its base of operations in Saint-Nicolas-la-Chapelle, in the French Alps, housed on the grounds of SEK-Les Alpes International School, which boasts all the benefits and services provided by SEK International Sports Academy and will provide academic education to athletes. The sporting and coaching aspects will be the responsibility of the International Ski School (ISS).