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Tuuli Merikoski

Tuuli Sisko Merikoski
Born November 22, 1967 Tampere

Executive Masters in Sports Organization Management (MEMOS) 2007, University of Lyon
Specialist Qualification in Management 2001, Sport Institute of Finland
Master of Arts 1998 (general linguistics), University of Helsinki

Director of development for top-level sport education 2011–, Helmi Business and Travel College, Helsinki
Expert advisor on dual career planning for athletes 2001–11, Finnish Olympic Committee
Executive director 1999–2011, Cultural and Sports Association of Finnish Vocational Education and Training, SAKU
Sports secretary 1998, Cultural and Sports Association of Finnish Vocational Education and Training, SAKU
Top athlete 1987–94, Finnish Athletics Federation

Board of the Finnish Olympic Committee 2012–
Chairman of the board 2014–, Finnish Foundation for the Promotion of Athletes’ Professional Education
Board member 2014–, Urhea Foundation , Metropolitan Sports Academy
Board member 1998– Tampereen Pyrintö basketball team

Numerous expert lectures and workshops in sports and educational organisations, many articles on combining sport and study and athletes’ career planning.

“Dual Career in Finland” in the book Sport, Education and Training in Europe. A dual career for a dual life. 2015.

“Urheiluakatemiasta tukea opiskeluun ja huippu- urheiluun. Akatemioiden tarjoamia mahdollisuuksia ei vielä ole täysin oivallettu (‘Support from the sports academy for study and top-level sport. The opportunities offered by sports academies have yet to be fully appreciated’)” (Together with Jari Lämsä and Asko Härkönen) Liikunta & Tiede 2-3/2009

Memorandum of the working group investigating the financial situation of student athletes, Ministry of Education 2004

“Onnellisen naisen paluu” (Return of the happy woman) in the work Juoksun hurma ja tuska. suomalaisen kestävyysjuoksun kuva (‘The ecstasy and the agony of running. A portrait of Finnish long-distance running’) 1994.

Finnish women’s 800m record (2:00.59) 1991, still standing

Photo: Anu Laitila
Written by Tuuli Merikoski and Olli Siitonen (ed.)
Translated by Matthew Billington

My Best Memories from the University of Helsinki

My best memories from the University of Helsinki are related to the people I knew there and how they understood and respected my athletic career. Most of my dealings were with the academic staff at the Department of General Linguistics, but the whole Faculty seemed to have a positive attitude and a flattering hint of curiosity towards my athletic endeavours. The best individual moment was in 2002, when I visited the University as advisor on study and career planning for the Olympic Committee to meet with the then vice rector Raija Sollamo.

The purpose of the meeting was to inquire into the University of Helsinki’s willingness to join a network of sport and educational organisations, the aim of which was to bring athletics and academics closer together. The University’s attitude had not changed since my student days, and we were shown the green light to go ahead with our plans. The matter at hand was the Metropolitan Sports Academy, which is still collaborating with the University to this day.

Photo by Jonna Ordning.

Another fine memory is a piece of advice I received from the then head of the Department of General Linguistics, Fred Karlsson. Fred encouraged me to embrace themes related to sports in my linguistic studies. It proved to be sage advice, and I have passed it on to athletes under my guidance. Doing research is easier when you concentrate on an area familiar to you, as sports were to me. Sports offer many possibilities in various fields, from mathematics to sociology and from law to religious studies. I had one of the most enjoyable experiences at the University when I compared the progression of an 800 metre race and the change of the race leader to turn taking in Conversation Analysis.

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