One SpiRIT: Global Hockey Festival

Rochester Institute of Technology, in an effort to connect its five campuses worldwide, will host its inaugural One SpiRIT: Global Hockey Festival at the brand new Gene Polisseni Center on Saturday, Oct. 11.

In a global celebration of RIT hockey, RIT’s main campus will be connected with its international campuses in Croatia, Dubai and Kosovo via advanced Cisco Systems telecommunications technology. This technology will allow students from around the world to interact with each other in real time.

On the main campus in Rochester, festival-goers will be treated to an assortment of food, tailgating games, giveaways, live music and much more prior to Tigers’ men’s and women’s hockey games. Highlights of the day include:

  • 12:30 p.m., festivities begin at a tent located between the Student Alumni Union and the Gene Polisseni Center.
  • 1:30 p.m., worldwide broadcast powered by Cisco begins on big screens at five global locations.
  • 3:05 p.m., women’s hockey game vs. Northeastern University.
  • 7:05 p.m., men’s hockey game vs. Clarkson University.

James Watters, senior vice president of Finance and Administration, said the One SpiRIT festival is an outgrowth of the leadership development program that connects the student governments of RIT’s overseas campuses with the Rochester campus.

“This event is a tremendous opportunity to bring the RIT community together as one global family,” said Watters. “We are sharing our rich hockey tradition while building a new tradition at the recently opened state-of-the-art Gene Polisseni Center. This festival will allow our students here to engage with their global classmates and in turn, our international students will experience an important part of our culture at the main RIT campus.”

The festival is free of charge and open to the public. Admission to the women’s hockey game is free for students with an RIT student ID. Tickets for the men’s and women’s games are still available.

Karey Pine, senior director of the RIT Center for Campus Life, said that when festival-goers arrive, they will be in for a unique experience that features a tailgate atmosphere combined with technology and a global presence.

“We want the community to come out and see that our campus extends beyond ‘Brick City,’ in the town of Henrietta,” said Pine. “Only at RIT will you be able to gear up for hockey games with friends overseas using technology.”

The One SpiRIT festival is geared up for a powerful online presence. The day’s hockey games will be streamed on a special One SpiRIT website: www.rit.edu/onespirit. The event will also be represented on Twitter by #RITOneSpirit and a festival Facebook event page.

Cisco video conferencing technology, TelePresence, will power the event. The technology seamlessly links two different spaces with 1080p video and spatial audio. On the other side of the globe, RIT students will be celebrating at pubs, clubs and their own campuses.

“One SpiRIT will take place at the beautiful Banje beach where we will tune into RIT’s broadcast of the event,” said Christina Petrović, who is responsible for the event organization at RIT Croatia’s campus in Dubrovnik along the Adriatic Sea. “I can already tell you it’s going to be amazing. It feels like belonging to a community.” Marija Šušak, organizer of the RIT Croatia event in the capital of Zagreb, added: “We are all super excited and can’t wait for it to start. This is definitely a great way to bring all RIT campuses together.”