On August 25th at the Ohio State Recreation and Physical Activity Center, the College of Medicine held its 2nd annual Learning Society Olympics. Consisting of challenges that range from the physical (basketball and volleyball) to the creative (art competition), the Olympics will pit six teams against each other in a daylong event.
Approximately 60 students participated in this years event. At its core, the Olympics are a way to kick off the school year by facilitating camaraderie and providing new medical students the opportunity to meet upperclassmen. The competitiveness of the day is not to be overlooked, however; it is underscored by the final event – a tug of war – that ultimately determines the year’s winner and which learning society’s name will grace the large trophy cup that will reside in the display case on the first floor lobby of Graves Hall.
Jim Collen is entering his second year at the College and participated in his first Learning Olympics last year as a new student. He notes the significance of the event and how it blends competition with friendship. “The Olympics unified our group as a team, and it absolutely built camaraderie. It was cool because I played basketball against 4th year students, some of whom ended up being my good friends.”
The Learning Olympics are capped off by a dinner and awards ceremony in the evening, wrapping up an event that requires six to eight months of planning and preparation. With the support of Eileen Mehl, the College’s director of student activities, Alan Harzman, MD, who serves as the director of the Learning Societies, oversees the Learning Olympics and, thus, helps to launch another year in the educational journey of an OSU medical student.