What is a Scholarship?
A scholarship is an award of financial aid offered to a student who has shown excellence in their sport, as well as in the classroom. A scholarship makes tuition fees more affordable, and allows colleges to offer financial packages to student-athletes who demonstrate the skills required to compete at the collegiate level.
A scholarship has a one-year expiry date, which will be reviewed and renewed yearly. The coach at the university will determine how much scholarship he will give you, and will review your sporting and academic achievements along with your impact on the team environment when determining your scholarship for the following year. It is uncommon for a scholarship to decrease, without prior warning. Poor effort/poor academic grades are a great way for a coach to take away scholarship money from you, so make sure you stay on top of your studies. Show up, and you’ll pass!
A scholarship can cover a portion of the tuition fees, room and board (accommodation), books, insurance, team gear, and food. Please note: a scholarship does not cover the cost of your travel (flights) to and from university.
For example, Ashland City University might cost $30,000 per year to attend. Broken down like so; $15,000 tuition, $8,000 accommodation, $3000 food, $1200 books, $1000 insurance & $1800 on team gear. The coach could award you a $24,800 scholarship which covers your tuition, accommodation, & team gear, leaving you to pay $5200 (food, books & insurance).
There are 3 different governing bodies in college sports;
National Collegiate Athletic Association | NCAA (Divisions I, II & III)
National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics | NAIA
National Junior College Athletic Association | NJCAA
They can be loosely broken down into these categories;
NCAA DI & II - Large public universities
NCAA DIII - Smaller private universities
NAIA - Smaller private universities
NJCAA - Two-year colleges
Please note: NCAA DI, II, III, & the NAIA are four-year institutions and the NJCAA is for two-year institutions. After two years at an NJCAA school, you can transfer to a four-year school to complete your final two years of study.
The SAT test is a standardised test governed by the College Board [college board.org] which is used for college admission in the United States. Every incoming freshman needs to take the test and meet the minimum score required to be accepted to your chosen school. Every school has their own admissions minimum score they accept. The test is 3 hours in length or 3 hours 50 minutes if you take on the essay portion, (which is optional), broken in segments with short breaks in-between. It is a multiple-choice exam, with only a limited number of test dates available each year. You can re-take the test as many times as you like, until you are happy with your score. Around the 1100 mark is considered a good score, which will enable you admissions to most schools across the USA.
The SAT registration fee is $52, and if you are taking the test outside of the USA, you will be charged an International registration fee, which is $49. A total of $101 to take the SAT test. You do not need to purchase the study material books that are on offer, as we have study materials for you.
The TOEFL test (Test of English as a Foreign Language) is for students who come from countries where English is not the primary language of the country. Most schools require the TOEFL test to be taken to be granted admission to the school. In some circumstances, good grades in English in school can be enough to demonstrate a good level of the English language, and thus the TOEFL test may not be needed. The test has four sections; Reading, Listening, Speaking and Writing, with each section having a max score of 30, and a total test score out of 120. Obtaining a score of around 90 is considered a fair score, and will be acceptable at most schools. The cost of the TOEFL test is determined by your location, with fees ranging from $200-$275.
The Duolingo English Test is a fairly new test that can be done in the comfort of your own home. This test is used as a replacement for the TOEFL test. The Duolingo test is accepted by over 2000 institutions in the USA, and is considerably cheaper in comparison to the TOEFL test, at just $49. The test takes around 1 hour to complete, and you receive you results within 2 days.
If you plan to enrol at an NAIA, NCAA Division 1 or 2 school you will need to register with the relevant eligibility centre. These centres are in place to grant players their four years of eligibility, to make it fair for all students. You cannot play for your new school until you are cleared to play by the NCAA or the NAIA. Historically speaking the decision processing time can take months so we recommend having all your paperwork in order and ready to go once you've made your decision on which school you will attend. If you are just choosing between NAIA schools or solely NCAA schools then its best to sign up and create your profile immediately. The cost of the eligibility centre is $135.
NCAA & NAIA ELIGIBILITY CENTRE
Before arriving at your new school, you need to apply and be granted an F1 Student Visa by the United States of America. The F1 Visa will be issued for 5 years, to allow you to complete your 4-year bachelor's degree, with an additional year if you need it. Alternatively, you can use your 5th year to do an OPT, which stands for Optional Practical Training, and that basically means you can work in the USA for one year.
Once you are accepted to your new school you will be sent an I-20 form, which you will need to have in your possession to schedule an appointment with the US embassy that is closest to you. If you do not have the I-20 form, you will not be able to schedule an interview for an F1 student visa. The visa application costs $160, and an additional fee will be charged for the completion of the DS-160 online non-immigration visa application, which varies from each location. You can find all the information you need to complete the visa process by clicking here.