Athletic Recruitment in US universities
By Gary Keung
(Admissions Consultant at The Edge Learning Center)
After her outstanding performance at the Beijing Winter Olympics, Eileen Gu became the youngest Olympic champion in freestyle skiing. At age 18, with an acceptance letter from Stanford University, Gu has also drawn considerable attention from Chinese parents seeking a path to their children’s success in college admissions. It is important to note that Gu’s success is attributed to not only her sports accomplishments; she scored 1580 in her SAT, alongside an inspiring goal to encourage young girls in sports. Nevertheless, Gu’s accomplishment in sports and the media coverage of the Olympics have generated interest in entering prestigious US universities as student-athletes.
As a result, many current or aspiring student-athletes would wonder how their involvement in sports will impact their college admissions chances, if sports will give them a boost, and whether they will be able to continue playing in college. While the process and the intricacies warrant a chapter-by-chapter guide, here is a few steps below for you, the student-athlete, to get started:
1. Stay Ahead Academically
Before going through the recruitment process, make sure you take the correct classes, and your GPA is satisfactory. You must meet NCAA eligibility by making sure you take related NCAA-approved courses at your school.
2. Research the University, Team, and the Coach
Take some time to learn about the teams of the colleges you are considering. You may also want to check out the coach reviews and college database on the NCSA website. Look at the team’s previous years’ records and the current roster, and determine which players are graduating and whether they will need your position.
3. Create a College Recruitment Video
The production of a high-quality video has become an essential component of the recruiting process. Spending time to create a well-made 5-10 minute highlight video is a great way to showcase your skills and athletic ability. It would be best to have at least one video for each year of competition you play.
4. Reach Out to Coaches
Start by organizing a list of coach contact information from the schools you are interested in. Then send an email to each coach with a brief introduction of who you are, your achievements, and why you are interested in their program. Keep an open mind, communicate respectfully with coaches, and make sure you are exploring all your options.
College sports recruitment, much like the Olympics, can be an emotional roller coaster – exhilarating, exhausting, and disappointing. However, by getting your start early, contacting coaches, and growing in your abilities on the field and in the classroom, your hard work could be rewarded and become an inspiring figure for student-athletes to come!
About The Edge
Established in 2008, The Edge Learning Center has grown into a premier one-stop provider of educational services for Grade 7 through Grade 12, targeting students who intend to pursue overseas education. Our three departments – Academic Tutoring, Test Preparation, and Admissions Consulting – offer a broad range of educational services spanning from SAT and IB Test Prep to colleges and boarding schools application counseling. The Edge Learning Center operates in multiple regions including Hong Kong, China, and Vietnam.