In 2000 the inaugural Endeavor Games for athletes with physical disabilities was hosted on the UCO campus. Seeing the importance of the event and the importance of the Paralympic movement the University of Central Oklahoma absorbed the Endeavor Games in 2004. In 2005, UCO became the home to the men’s national sitting volleyball team and an official U.S. Paralympic Training Site. Not long after the women’s national sitting volleyball team officially made UCO their home.
At the 2008 Beijing Paralympic Games UCO sent 16 athletes to compete in sitting volleyball, field, and archery. These athletes brought home 4 gold medals, 1 silver, and a fourth place finish.
In 2009, the University received the Olympic designation, becoming one of the only universities in the nation at the time to be an Olympic and Paralympic Training Site.
In 2010, UCO hosted the Sitting Volleyball World Championships in Edmond, Ok. This was the largest international volleyball tournament ever to be hosted on US soil. Thirty-three teams from twenty-five countries descended on the campus for a ten day tournament. At the end of the tournament the top three teams in the men’s and women’s division would secure their place to the 2012 London Paralympic Games.
The training site at UCO has continued to offer athletes quality sport programs to help aid them in achieving their Olympic or Paralympic dreams. Now, with many years of experience and building on the tradition offering quality adaptive sport programs, UCO will offer adaptive recreation opportunities to students.
Students will have opportunities to participate in intramurals, adaptive recreation, and club sports.
The training site at UCO will continue to offer high quality programs for students, novice athletes, recreational athletes, and elite athletes for many years to come.