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      Future of USOEC?

      With the cut in federal funding, the U.S. Olympic Education Center has lost hundreds of thousands of dollars, and they may be making some changes when it comes to the future of the program.

      The USOEC is one of four Olympic training centers in the country, and it gives Olympic-bound athletes an education at NMU.

      "We're trying to decide what is best for everyone involved...what can be funded, what works for the national governing bodies, for the student-athletes, for Northern. A lot of discussions have taken place. Everybody would like a fast and quick decision, but that's just not the way it works," Director of Communications, Cindy Paavola said.

      If the USOEC doesn't get more money, they could have to possibly cut teams, and athletes would have to pay for their educations.

      "It's going to depend upon where it stands in the run of the federal funding, because we can't designate funding for a specific place anymore. It's just against the rules. So, funding federally may be difficult. We're trying to facilitate a method of private funding, so I've been pursuing different avenues for that," Congressman Dan Benishek said.

      However, the USOEC says the wait for private funding will take too long.

      "It's easy to say 'let's find private funding.' We would love to find private funding, we're certainly going to work hard to find private funding, but it's not something you can say today and do tomorrow. It takes a certain amount of time. How are we going to keep the center, the team, the programs, alive, funded and doing well?" added Paavola.

      The training center currently hosts men and women's wrestling, speed skating, and weightlifting teams.