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Why do colleges and universities offer scholarships?

Combining sporting scholarships with academic qualifications is very common in the US. American universities and colleges have teams in many sports and employ coaches to professionally manage these teams. By competing with other institutions across the US, the sports teams are effectively advertising and promoting their institutions to attract new student athletes from around the world. Success at a regional or national level can raise the profile of that institution. Hence the colleges offer scholarships to attract the best athletes.

What is a College Scholarship?

On a sports scholarship, you help pay for the cost of your tuition by representing your college or university in competitions and tournaments. You are combining study for your academic qualification with practicing and playing your chosen sport. You need to reach a good standard in your chosen sport and have the correct academic credentials before you are offered a sport’s scholarship. In addition, academic scholarships can be offered to students who achieve a good academic performance.

What academic qualification can I get from a US College or University?

Just like in the UK, the US has different levels of universities and colleges. You can gain different types of qualifications, from a degree to a diploma, depending on which institution you attend. The range of subjects offered in the US is very broad and you can generally apply to study any of the courses on offer at the institution in conjunction with your sports scholarship (subject to your academic credentials).

Who decides if I get a scholarship?

Scholarships are granted by the university or college, or in some cases by the athletic association in which they participate. The sports coaches usually play a key role in deciding who is offered a scholarship.

How much of a scholarship can I receive?

This varies from one institution to the next. Scholarships are awarded on a percentage basis. For example, an 80% scholarship will cover 80% of the total cost for one year. Institutions have strict limits on the total amount they can award each year. This means they may offer a larger number of smaller awards instead of a smaller number of large awards. For example, an institution that has four 100% scholarships may split them into eight 50% scholarships to facilitate twice the number of student athletes.