How am I going to pay for college? This is the question on all high-schooler and their parent’s minds. When your child should be focusing on their studies and enjoying time in school, they can become overwhelmed with anxiety about further education. If your child is an athlete, then an athletic scholarship could be a solution to the financial strain. On top of that, it could give them the chance to continue their passion for playing sports.
So how can your child qualify for an athletic scholarship? Well, just like sports themselves, it’s a competitive process to secure one of those valued spots. If you follow these guidelines, then you’ll have the best chance of helping your child qualify.
As soon as your child begins high school, they have the potential of being seen by scouts. If they are serious about their chosen sport, they should give it all they have from the beginning. If your child plays multiple sports, it might be worth choosing their favorite and sticking to that. You don’t want them to burn out or spread themselves thin, plus they are more likely to excel if their focus is on one. Don’t leave the application process too late. If your child is looking at college golf scholarships, encourage them to take the tests as early as possible.
Make friends with the coaches
In order to be rostered to a college team, your child will need to be known by the coaches and recruiters. Your child needs to stand out and make an impact on them. There are some rules around how and why recruiters and athletes speak directly. That being said, your child should make contact with the coaches and recruiters to express interest in their programs. Once they’ve visited and met your child in-person, it’s crucial to keep the recruiters updated on any significant milestones in their athletic journey. Having a good rapport with their high school coach will help as well since recruiters often speak to them about potential players.
Don’t lose focus on academics
Recruiters will have access to every athletes’ academic records, and they can play a substantial role in whether your child is chosen or not. Your child needs to keep up with their studies since the scholarship has just as much of an academic portion as it does athletic. While in high school, the rules are quite relaxed, at the college level, your child will need to keep up a minimum GPA to keep their scholarship. Even if they are the best player on the team, the coach will not be able to keep them on the team.
Community service and school involvement
Character is another critical component in securing an athletic scholarship. Recruiters will look at an athlete’s community service and how they have volunteered their time. Participation in their school, such as being a part of the school council or other committees, will also give your child a good boost in the eyes of a recruiter.
Encouraging your child to follow their passion for their favorite sport is the best thing you can do as a parent. Supporting and guiding them to try their best academically, get involved in the community, and hone their athletic skills will give them a solid chance at qualifying for an athletic scholarship.