The Sport Source College Quick Tips
Organize your college search
Are you ready for college? Whether you’re incoming freshmen or preparing for your senior year of high school, college planning is essential.
Cultivate a list of colleges which are a good fit for you academically, and if interested in collegiate sports, athletically as well. Decide what is most important to you as you review each one; is it the location, the climate, type of campus, programs of study, public or private colleges that appeal to you?
Don’t know where to begin? Take the FREE 24 Hour MATCHFIT® or College Profiler™ Challenge and find your perfect college fit!
As you begin your search, remember that there are 5800 colleges and universities to choose from. Some are well known schools like Harvard or Yale, while others might be small colleges you may not know about, like Briar Cliff University or Spring Hill College, for example. Each one offers its own unique college experience, education, and opportunities. Take the time to thoroughly research the colleges that meet your criteria, and consider all options available to you.
If you plan to play NCAA Division I or II - NAIA - Register for Eligibilty
If you’re an incoming high school junior and considering playing at the NCAA DIV I or DIV II level, now’s the time to register with the NCAA Eligibility Center. The NCAA will require certification of your academic and athletic eligibility in order to play a collegiate sport. You’ll need to determine if you are meeting GPA, core course, and amatuerism requirements.
Visit www.ncaa.org for information on how to register with the NCAA Eligiblity Center.
Incoming high school seniors interested in playing NAIA will also be required to register for eligiblity. The NAIA will have its own set of standards that must be met, and you can find out specifics by visiting www.playnaia.com
Good Grades = Money in your pocket
SAT and ACT testing
Consider taking an SAT and or ACT test late Spring and or early Fall. For seniors, find out the last applicable date that a college will accept your scores from, as many will have a December cut-off date.
Did you know on average, most students take the SAT test 2 to 3 times, and or the ACT twice to better their score? Check to see what combination of scores can be utilized for the colleges and or universities you apply to. Many will let you create a Super Score, or will allow you to take the best scores from a single testing date to submit for admissions purposes.
Did you know that taking AP courses in high school could earn you college credit and academic scholarship money all at the same time? Did you know that if you have a GPA of 3.5+ with an SAT of 1800 or ACT of 30, you could earn a Presidential or Provost Scholarship at a number of universities?
Bottom line - the better your test scores and GPA, the better opportunity you have to earn scholarship dollars, and have your education paid for.
Volunteer your time and talent!
City websites usually have an area dedicated to voulunteer opportunites, so you can connect with organizations who need your help. While some opportunites might be one time only, many others will ask you to commit to either a weekly or monthly obligation. Think about what you can do, what you want to do, and the type of commitment you are willing to make.
Admissions counselors are always looking for students who can offer more than just a great GPA, and often will gauge applicants on what they have done outside of the academic enviroment, such as volunteer work. Not only is volunteering a great way to give back to the community, it helps you become a well rounded individual too.
Plan ahead for the future
As you plan your high school career, take the time to sit down with your high school Guidance Counselor and review course selections for the next academic year. Determine the following:
- Are you meeting graduation requirements with core courses and required electives
- If pursuing athletics, are you meeting NCAA core course requirements
- Should you consider taking Pre-AP, AP, or Dual Credit Courses where applicable
Ask which courses you should take if there is a specific field of study you would like to pursue. Many high school campuses will offer Gateway Courses which will align a student with classes that complement their potential college major, giving you a head-start before ever setting foot on a college campus.
Laying the pebbles in your path
Determine if you have done or could be doing the following to make your path to college an easier one:
- Performing in the classroom and on the field
- Assessing your strenghs as a player and student-athlete
- Beginning the college identification process early, freshman and sophomore years of high school
- Eliminating those college programs from your search that are not a good fit for you academically, athletically, or financially
- Evaluting your options as a student first and an athlete second
- Selecting 7-10 compatiable college programs based on your needs and ability
- Choosing the one college or univeristy that best fits your needs and abilities
- The right choice for you means that it fully meets your objectives for a degree plan and athletic program, all at a cost your family can afford
Need more information on organizing your college search? Connect with us at www.thesportsource.com