Every year millions of high school student-athletes are jockeying to put themselves in the position to be competitive for a coveted Division I NCAA scholarship. The reason for this intense competition can be traced back to the many advantages that come with being offered a scholarship by one of the 347 Division I schools. In addition to being able to continue competing in the sport that you love, there is a bevy of inherent advantages that come with continuing your athletic career at the college level. Here are just a few of the benefits that come with playing sports at the Division I level:
Free or Reduced Cost College Education – The biggest benefit of being awarded an NCAA Division I scholarship is the opportunity that it affords to receive a college education at little to no cost. There are varying levels of scholarships ranging from full rides to partial amounts, making it important that you understand what kind of scholarship you have been offered.
Access to Academic Services – Student-athletes who have received athletic scholarships to NCAA Division I schools are automatically at an advantage when it comes to academic opportunities. Many schools offer a wide array of services designed to help their student-athletes succeed in the classroom. Examples of these services include private tutoring, study hall access, and visits with guidance counselors.
Chance to Travel – One of the most appreciated benefits offered to student-athletes at the NCAA Division I level is the chance to travel around the country and sometimes even the world. You will go where the competition is, allowing you to see a host of diverse places along the way. While most of the travel is not glamorous, many teams try to work in time to sight-see while on their trips.
Lasting Relationships – Competing with the same group people year in and year out naturally means that you will begin to develop lasting bonds. The relationships that you build with your teammates, coaches, and administrators will stay with you for a lifetime. Learning to deal with different personality types in a close setting will also provide you with invaluable life skills as you progress through your adult relationships.
Future Job Prospects Increased – Competing at the NCAA Division I level looks great on a college resume. Business leaders have high respect for student-athletes who have demonstrated that they can successfully balance the rigors of their studies with their team commitments. Being involved in college athletics will also provide you with connections and networking opportunities that may prove useful as you advance through your career.