Mount Union Student Represents International Federation of American Football

July 31, 2015

By Brandon Lucas

ALLIANCE, Ohio – University of Mount Union international student Tymofii “Tim” Sidak happened to be at the right place at the right time this July when he was asked to be the representative for his home country Ukraine for the International Federation of American Football (IFAF). 

At Mount Union, Sidak is a freshman public relations major and psychology minor. Before coming to Mount, Sidak heard only positive stories about Mount Union from his home in Ukraine.

“I heard a lot of good comments on Mount Union and I also have a friend who studied at Mount Union,” Sidak said.

The IFAF is a national organization formed in 1998 that consists of approximately 70 countries. This goal of the organization is to help raise overall awareness and recognition of American football in countries outside the United States by educating players and the football community through educational seminars and increasing international competition. Through this, one of the goals of the IFAF is to eventually bring American football to the Olympics.

Though Sidak has no prior knowledge or personal experience with football, the president of the organization emailed him personally, asking him to be the representative of his country.

“The president of the Federation emailed Mount Union and asked if there were any students from Ukraine. So I got an email from him and that's how I became a delegate,” Sidak said.

During this event, Sidak sat through the organization’s annual meeting at the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio. He watched in awe as they discussed and voted on new positions, such as a new president and saw how the organization operates as a whole. During Sidak’s experience, he expressed his opinion on various questions and topics and helped with the scheduling of a new meeting in Paris that will happen next year. After the meeting, Sidak met influential people from around the world, something that would never have happened if not for this opportunity.

Serving as a representative for IFAF is an experience that Sidak will cherish. This opportunity opened new doors and helped him learn a little bit more about football and himself.

“I never thought that American football could be played outside of the U.S. Now I know that almost any ambitious idea, when well executed and thought through, can become reality.”

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