General

How do I pick the right college for me?

By Stewart Stanbra
One of the most difficult moments in this entire process is for students to commit to a university and ‘take the leap’ in deciding where the next years of education and college sport will be spent.

Our team at CSUSA has helped more than 2000 young student-athletes through the recruiting process at colleges and universities in the USA.

One of the most difficult moments in this entire process is for students to commit to a university and ‘take the leap’ in deciding where the next years of education and college sport will be spent.

It is the moment that every prospective student-athlete craves and looks forward to, but when it comes, many become nervous and freeze. This is entirely understandable, it is a big decision for the future and it is natural to have doubts and concerns.

Our experienced team help our students with their process and give advice about decision making. In the jungle of information out there, it is important to get assistance to navigate through the information thrown at every student. All schools try to sell their school and why you should attend!

From the very start of the process, it is important to try and figure out what you want. What are the key criteria that matter to the student and the athlete?

What is realistic?

There are THREE items that are (in 99% of the cases) the most important to get right.

These three items are always the place to start. Our team will work to assess students’ academic potential and sporting abilities before they start the process and endeavor to help the student realize what is possible and realistic.

This is not always an easy task, there are many misconceptions about levels of academics and sports at American Universities. We find friends and family members who attended schools 20-30 years ago offering advice that is outdated, as well as peers in the system already. (Just because a student plays on the same soccer team at home, does not necessarily mean they will be equally appealing to coaches. The compatibility with US sports, academic level and financial capabilities all are factors that individually make a difference)

Set Preferences

Once those three parameters and realistic expectations are known, it is smart to build a picture of what is important to the student in finding a college for the coming years. These items can vary a lot depending on the individual, some are more important than others. Some examples:

In the end, the student and advisor need to narrow down the list of preferences to what is most important and realistic and target colleges and programs meeting those criteria always considering which factors you have some flexibility on or not.

Taking the Leap

Our advice to students over the last 11 years has always been the same. Remember your preferences and expectations, so that when opportunities/scholarship offers come along you can assess the school and program against those criteria.

And, if you find a school that ticks the boxes and it feels right….don’t hesitate! It might seem daunting but if you have analyzed well you can make a quick and clear decision.

Coaches are always recruiting and there are thousands of students in the US and around the world desperate to be recruited and get scholarships. Don’t miss on a chance by taking too long to decide, be prepared in advance to make decisions.

Find out more about the recruiting process here:  OUR PROCESS

Anton Holmqvist

Soccer
Wilmington College, Ohio

Benjamin Nygård

Soccer
North Park University, Illinois

Fredrik Ingul

Golf
Menlo College, California

Isabel Herden

Soccer
Siena Heights University, Michigan

Amanda Hallesjö

Soccer
Virginia Commonwealth University

Fern Lazenby

Soccer
Mercyhurst University, Pennsylvania