Race for a grant: sports scholarships in universities

Sports scholarships in universities. The hottest guy in school scores a goal in a football game to get an athletic scholarship to the Ivy League. This is what they show us in films. But how are things in reality? We will tell you in this article who can go to university and for what sporting achievements.


What is a sports scholarship

This is a grant or funding for sports merits and achievements. For example, if you have been a great swimmer all your life, participated in competitions, and won prizes, then you can apply for a sports scholarship. But only if the university you choose has a swimming pool and a swimming section.

Athletic scholarships can cover both the full cost of education and partial expenses: tuition fees, textbook costs, on-campus housing and meals. But for this you will have to comply with the financing conditions. If you are lucky enough to receive an athletic scholarship, you must participate in the university team and fulfill the requirements set by the coach. This may include training, competing and supporting the team.

The conditions and requirements for receiving such a grant vary from country to country and even from university to university. Therefore, there are no uniform requirements for admission. It is important to study the conditions and deadlines carefully and in advance when submitting an application.

Where to get a sports scholarship

The best chances are in the USA. In this country, university sports are not just a physical education section. Clubs, teams and athletes are engaged at a professional level. For example, if students play tennis, they train like the world number one Novak Djokovic. If it’s football, then the preparation is like that of the best clubs in England. In the USA, university matches and competitions are organized at a very high level, and tickets are almost always sold out. College games are often shown on national television, and college coaches are paid more than their counterparts in, for example, the NBA (National Basketball Association).


In other countries, there is no such level of sports “culture” at universities, and scholarships themselves are much less common, although they still exist there.

In which countries can you get a sports scholarship?

USA One of the most developed sports scholarship systems in the world. The NCAA (National Association of Colleges and Universities) sets the rules and regulations for these scholarships.
Australia Australian universities provide sports scholarships, but the system is not as widespread as in the US. These are often called “sports grants” and are awarded on a competitive basis.
Great Britain Some universities provide athletic scholarships or tuition discounts for talented student-athletes, but the level of financial support may be lower than in the United States and will not cover full tuition.
Europe In some European countries, such as Germany and France, there are universities that provide sports scholarships or other forms of financial support for athletes. However, this practice is less common than in North America.
Canada Canada also has a system of sports scholarships at universities. Student-athletes can receive financial support from universities to study and become part of sports teams.

What are the living and study conditions of student-athletes?

From movies about teenagers and college life, it seems like student-athletes have been handed the golden ticket. But let’s look at the conditions that the lucky ones who received a scholarship for sports must comply with.

The training load can range from 20 to 50 hours a week, like professional athletes. You also need to have time to do your homework and go to classes! You need to be prepared for the fact that this is a colossal job with lack of sleep, difficulties in getting straight A’s and lack of free time. Student-athletes have such a busy schedule that other people make it up: assistant coaches, personal tutors, department assistants. The sleep and nutrition schedule is also clearly defined. All four years, the life of a student-athlete is planned minute by minute by a team of professionals.

Why sign up for this? There are benefits to this, and it’s not just about covering tuition fees. Students with a sports scholarship receive a scheduled meal plan and study individually with teachers in their free time in order to keep up with their studies. They are the first to choose and enroll in electives – subjects to choose from as part of the curriculum. In addition to academic benefits, such students receive access to free massages, relaxation rooms and other interesting activities within their university.

How to Look for a Sports Scholarship

In the United States, there are organizations that collect, monitor and monitor the conditions and issuance of sports scholarships.

The National Collegiate Athletic Association

1200 organizations representing 23 sports. On the Association’s website you will find a large number of sports scholarships.

The National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics

The NAIA offers small athletic scholarships in 21 sports. But more than 250 US colleges and universities cooperate with it, and over the course of its existence, $500 million in funding has been issued.

Next College Student Athlete

The largest platform for recruiting athletes in universities. More than 40,000 college coaches use NCSA to find athletes in 35 sports around the world, and students find scholarship options there.

In European countries, you can look for a sports scholarship on the official websites of universities or national sports organizations.

Competition for sports scholarships is very high. On average, 2% of all applications pass it, and the decision is made not by the university admissions committee, but by the coach himself. Therefore, it is very important to try to get not only athletic achievements, but also good grades and a resume.

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