I’ll leave you room to decide for yourselves how important the Universiade really is. Universiade Belgrade 2009 hosted approximately 9 000 athletes – students from 140 countries in the world, and approximately the same number of volunteers from all around the world. They competed in 15 sports and 208 disciplines in total. Among the athletes competing were most of the Olympic champions from Beijing in gymnastics, fencing, diving, and several other disciplines.
What is even more odd, however, is that students, especially those who are actively involved in sports, are not always informed of these kind of events, and many of them miss the chance to gain great experience and at the same time promote themselves as promising athletes. Even worse is the fact that state institutions responsible for supporting these kind of activities usually decide not to give financial support to these promising athletes. To illustrate this with an example from Macedonia, which was supposed to be represented by 30 registered students this year, but in the end it was only represented by 3 students.