The EUHA founded the league in November 2013 as the first regular international university hockey league in Europe. Since its foundation, more than 34 university teams from 9 Member States of the European Union (Slovakia, Czechia, Austria, Poland, Hungary, Sweden, Estonia, Latvia and Romania) participated in the EUHL. Vision of the EUHL is to build a strong all-European league with larger number of participating countries and teams (Austria, Germany, Sweden, Finland, France, Belgium, Netherlands, Slovenia, Latvia, Estonia, etc.) divided into divisions within the area of max. 700 kilometers in order to decrease travel and other costs.
Regular university hockey league that would supplement educational and sport system in Europe was missing until foundation of the EUHL, making it a unique and pioneer project in the European geographical area. Organizing this league ensures students – athletes have more opportunities in their dual careers.
EUHL in vertical and horizontal expansion
Regarding the vertical expansion, the EUHA plans to achieve the following:
- create an environment that facilitates dual careers for talented young hockey players, who are not forced to choose between pursuing education and hockey
- minimize number of players leaving the EU (for other countries), attract and keep more talented students – athletes and increase standard of the EUHL
- increase awareness of dual career opportunities for students – hockey players in higher education among students – hockey players in secondary schools, parents, hockey clubs´ management, coaches and teachers
- allow young students – athletes a smooth transfer to senior professional hockey, e.g. bridge junior and senior hockey for so called “late bloomers”, players peaking later than average but achieving high performance in older age.
Regarding the horizontal expansion, the EUHA plans to achieve the following:
- ensure long-term functioning of the regular university league – EUHL in its current geographical scope with the possibility of expansion, provided it is financially sustainable long-term
- support and assist with creating new university hockey teams in as many EU Member States as possible, with these new teams emerging as part of projects of hockey associations, Ministries of Education and dual careers of students – athletes in countries of the EU
- continue efforts to improve international cooperation with other student university hockey leagues, participate in international sport and expert conferences and meetings in order to exchange know-how and experience within and outside the EU.