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“The Torch” comes to Alfred University this Wednesday to celebrate partnership


22-inch-long torch, to be carried and celebrated on Alfred’s campus


Opening Ceremony on January 12, 2023 – Purchase Tickets for Ceremonies and Games HERE

ALFRED, N.Y. — The Lake Placid 2023 FISU World University Games Torch Relay Celebration arrives at the Alfred University campus on Wednesday, Dec. 7 as the kickoff to the 15-stop tour that culminates in the FISU Games’ first carbon-free cauldron lighting in Lake Placid. The cauldron lighting will open the 2023 Winter World University Games on Thursday, Jan. 12.

The torch relay celebration, powered by Hydro-Québec, will be welcomed by Alfred University with an on-campus torch run and a 10 a.m. ceremony featuring university athletes, engineers and other notable guests.

The ceremony will highlight Alfred University’s special connection to the Lake Placid 2023 FISU World University Games. The centerpiece of the FISU Games’ medals feature an inlaid phosphorescent recycled glass medallion, engineered and produced in partnership with Alfred University, leveraging the state’s history of innovative glass technology. More than 700 gold, silver and bronze medals will be awarded to the top-three collegiate competitors and teams in the 12 winter sports and 86 events that make up the Lake Placid 2023 FISU Games.

“Alfred University is proud and honored to provide our wealth of expertise to this important and sustainable effort,” said Gabrielle Gaustad, Dean of the Inamori School of Engineering. “Our staff of glass science and engineering professors and researchers are world-renowned for their work in this field and, working together with our students, they have delivered a fascinating and beautiful product that will make New York stand out among hosts of international sporting events.”

Rochester Rehabilitation Center employees, who are responsible for packaging the medals in custom-made keepsake wooden boxes designed and created by Rochester’s Flour City Craft Company, are also expected to attend.

The Jan. 12-22 Lake Placid 2023 FISU Games are expected to bring together 1,500 collegiate athletes, age 17-25, from 600 universities in 50 countries to participate in Alpine skiing, biathlon, cross-country skiing, curling, freestyle and freeski, figure skating, ice hockey, Nordic combined, short track speed skating, snowboarding, ski jumping and speed skating.

Torchbearers and dignitaries include: Alina Zabihailo from Kyiv, Ukraine, a first-year business administration student, all-conference player on Alfred’s women’s tennis team and co-founder of the Global Studies Club; softball all-conference pitcher Mikaela Perez, a Saxon Scholar Athlete from Pomona, Calif.; Ballston Spa’s Charlie Bellows, a PhD candidate in glass science engineering who helped design and produce the glass medals; Alfred University President Mark Zupan; Dean Gaustad, for whom sustainability has been a focus in her education, teaching and research; and retired professor and Alfred Mayor Becky Prophet.

For the first time the FISU Flame is being carried in a sustainable torch, with no actual combustion or flame present. Instead, in keeping with the Lake Placid 2023 FISU Games’ mission of sustainability, LED lights in the torch produce a brightly illuminated FISU Flame in a carbon-free presentation. These Games are the first in FISU history to make sustainability a major emphasis and provide a model for future FISU Games through the Save Winter campaign. Powered by Hydro-Québec and supported by ESPN, Karbon , Microplus and Panasonic, Save Winter is a movement designed to unite all who love winter to work together on the mission to save “the season of snow.”

The 22-inch-long torch, to be carried and celebrated on Alfred’s campus Wednesday, was created and built by Adirondack Studios of Argyle, N.Y., the same studio that built the award podiums for the 1980 Olympic Winter Games. The custom-made torch consists of elongated steel encasing a glacial-blue body, representing an artistic interpretation of ice and water.

Other highlighted torch relay celebration stops in the run-up to the Lake Placid 2023 FISU Games include the Indigenous lands of the Mohawk Kahnawá:ke in Quebec, Canada; New York City’s Rockefeller Center; Albany’s New York State Capitol; and the campuses of SUNY Canton, Clarkson University and SUNY Potsdam.

Upon the torch’s arrival in Lake Placid, plans include stops at two of the New York State Olympic Regional Development Authority venues where many of the competitions will be held. The relay will conclude with the lighting of the cauldron in the historic Brewster Park.

Fans can follow the Lake Placid 2023 FISU World University Games on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter with @LakePlacid2023, @SaveWinterHQ, #lakeplacid2023, #savewinter.

For more information about the Lake Placid 2023 FISU Games, the torch relay celebration, or to purchase tickets, visit

Photos courtesy of the Lake Placid 2023 FISU World University Games’ Organizing Committee

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