EducationUSA | Student Athlete Recruitment (March 2018)

EducationUSA | Student Athlete Recruitment (March 2018)


[MUSIC PLAYING] MR. ALFRED BOLL: Good morning
and good evening to our viewers from around the world. My name is Alfred Boll, and
I represent EducationUSA, and the Bureau of Educational
and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of
State in Washington, DC. Today’s Facebook Live event is
in honor of the 2018 Paralympic Winter games, which are now
underway in South Korea. We want to congratulate
all athletes taking part in the Paralympics, an
international multi-sport event for athletes with disabilities. Our show is aimed at
international students who are interested in playing
for college sports teams in the U.S. We will be
discussing student athlete recruitment. And we’ll have NCAA
representatives Mike DeCesar and Sarah Turner joining us. They will share their insights
on how athletics and academics go hand in hand. If you have questions
you would like them to answer
during the program, just post your question in
the comment section below. I’d now like to introduce
you to Liam Haycock, who is an international
student athlete. Liam is from Great Britain
and is a collegiate soccer player for the University
of the District of Columbia. Liam, soccer is a very
popular sport overseas. What attracted you to playing
soccer as a student athlete here in the United States? MR. LIAM HAYCOCK: I
believe playing here as a student athlete is
a big thing overseas. It gives you the chance to
come here, study, and play the sport you love, really. It’s an opportunity to get full
time education, opportunity to play the sport you want to,
and it’s a great experience, really. It pushes you on to
further endeavors, going further on in
your career, really. MR. BOLL: So it was both
professional and personal development and enrichment. MR. HAYCOCK: Yeah, certainly. It’s a breath of
fresh air coming from another
country, experiencing what it’s like to be
educated, the American system, and also being able
to play a sport in a professional
environment, really. It really was a shock
for me when I came here, to realize how seriously
competition and the NCAA take college athletics, really. MR. BOLL: That’s
fantastic, thank you. Liam, what piece
of advice would you give our international
students who are interested in
studying here in the U.S., and on being a student
athlete in general? MR. HAYCOCK: The piece
of advice I would give firstly is to make
sure it’s certainly something you want to do. Being an international
student and coming over here as a student athlete
carries a lot of burdens, really. It’s a big step to
make, and it requires a lot of hard work, preparation,
and it’s definitely something that international
students have to be aware of before making
the decision to go into being a college athlete. MR. BOLL: So get
the information, find out about what’s on
offer, and certainly, you know, that’s that’s very good advice. What were some resources
you found helpful when you started
applying to colleges, and getting the attention
of sports recruiters? MR. HAYCOCK: I
think for me, I was very lucky to have
people around me who influenced my path coming here. They were always very
helpful in telling me that the American
College athletics was a great opportunity for me,
myself, to come over here. And I would say to everyone
else that the resources I used, widen them. Don’t you just keep yourself
limited to who you talk to. Obviously you’re going to be
talking to coaches, talking to them about prospects
of coming here, and also I spoke to
college recruiters who help you along the way to
getting where you need to be. MR. BOLL: So were there–
were– did you actually speak to universities and
deal with people in the U.S. at colleges who then
could tell you more about their specific programs? MR. HAYCOCK: Certainly, yes. Obviously my point of reach
was the head coach first. And when I talk about head
coach in [INAUDIBLE] University of the District of
Columbia, I spoke to the head coach
of soccer at UDC, and he was very informative. With open communication, we
were able to talk to each other about what sort of
things needed to be done, and how I go about the process
of admitting into the school, really. MR. BOLL: Got it. So don’t be shy. Reach out. And I assume reach out widely. MR. HAYCOCK: Yeah. Reach out widely. Make sure you keep
your options open. Don’t just limit
yourself to one, because you’re going
to need backup plans. And make sure it’s the right
choice, the right commitment. MR. BOLL: Absolutely,
absolutely. Liam, thank you for
joining us today. If you want to hear
more from Liam, he will be participating
in our Facebook chat. Just ask your questions in
the discussion section below. He’ll be online to answer your
questions throughout the rest of the program. I would now like to introduce
Sarah Turner and Mike DeCesare from the National Collegiate
Athletic Association, better known as the NCAA. The NCAA is a member
led organization dedicated to the well-being
and lifelong success of college athletes. Sarah works for the NCAA’s
Customer Service Center, and Mike is the Associate
Director with the Eligibility Center. Sarah and Mike, thank you so
much for joining us today. Can you tell us a little more
about the NCAA Eligibility Center and the work you
do with student athletes? MS. SARAH TURNER: Thank
you for your interest and for the opportunity
to speak with you today. We are hoping conversations like
these will help our students and their parents
start to understand what requirements
students will need to play collegiate
athletics in America. While we won’t be able
to cover everything you need to know about
our process today, we want to make sure you
know the resources we have available. Our websites at ncaa.org can
provide a wealth of information on who we are, our requirements,
transfer information, and most importantly,
information specifically tailored for
international students. If you need to contact us with
questions about your account, you can find the
international contact form at www.ncaa.org/international. If you plan to register for
an NCAA Eligibility Center account, you will need to visit
www.eligibilitycenter.org. One of the things we
wanted to point out is the Help button on the
top of the screen includes additional resources and links. We are also active on
Twitter and Instagram if you’d like to
follow us for updates. If you want to know more about
the National Letter of Intent, please visit their website
at nationalletter.org. For more comprehensive
information, please check out the Guide
for the College Bound Student Athlete and the International
Standards Guide. The links for these
two guides can be found in the comments section below. MR. MIKE DECESARE:
The primary function of the NCAA
Eligibility Center is to help ensure students that
are coming into NCAA Division I and II schools are academically
prepared for college, and that they meet the NCAA’s
definition of amateur athlete. It is important to remember that
the certification of athletics eligibility is separate and
distinct from being admitted into a particular
college or university. Just because you are certified
to compete in athletics by the Eligibility
Center doesn’t mean you have been admitted
to the particular school. And similarly, you may
be admitted to a school, but not certified is eligible
to compete by the Eligibility Center. If you’re a transfer student
going to a Division I or Division II
school, you will still need to be certified by the
Eligibility Center, at least for amateurism. Please check with
the compliance office at the NCAA Division
I or Division II school you wish to attend to
determine whether you need an academic evaluation as well. NCAA Division III schools
conduct their certifications on campus, so students would
not need a certification account with the Eligibility Center. However, students
do have the option, as does everyone
listening today, to create a free profile
page that would provide us the information needed to
send you periodic updates and reminders. We have touched on some of the
differences between the three NCAA divisions already,
but the next graphic does a nice job of
showing more detail. As you do your research
about what type of college or university you
want to attend, it is important to
find a school that fits what you are looking
for both athletically and academically. It’s important to note
that fewer than 2% of NCAA student athletes move
on to professional athletics after finishing
college, so we encourage you to study hard, research,
and find the right fit for you and your family. MS. TURNER: We’d also like to
point out, for Division III, there are no athletic
scholarships available. Students are only eligible
for non-athletic aid. MR. BOLL: OK, Sarah and
Mike, thank you so much. We appreciate that
that information. I’m sure our viewers are going
to have lots of questions. I understand there are academic
and amateurism requirements. Could you tell us a little
bit more about both of those? MS. TURNER: So on
the academic side, we require students to
complete 16 core courses in the core subject
areas of English and native language,
mathematics, natural and physical
science, social science, and additional core courses like
philosophy, foreign languages, and non-denominational
religion courses. You can see the
breakdown of credits by division in this slide. We utilize the
students’ transcripts for years nine and up to
find the 16 core credits as well as determine
their grade-point average from those courses. In addition to transcripts,
students will also need to complete
the SAT or ACT test, you must be deemed
a final qualifier or receive an automatic waiver
to be eligible for practice, athletic scholarship,
and competition during your first
year in university. MR. DECESARE: When you register
with the NCAA Eligibility Center, you will be asked
a series of questions about your sports participation
history for each sport that you’d like to
play in college. This information
will be evaluated to determine your amateurism
status for NCAA Division I and Division II colleges
and universities. Common issues that we see
are listed on the slide here. These are issues that
can limit your ability to play your sport in college. Ultimately, we want to guard
against professional athletes competing against
student athletes. One of the most
common occurrences we see with
international students is that of delayed enrollment. For most sports, the NCAA allows
for a grace period of one year to delay enrollment after
completion of secondary school studies, but any additional
delay beyond that could incur
eligibility penalties. I think that’s enough
to get us started. Hopefully this intro has
sparked some questions. MR. BOLL: Thank you so
much Sarah and Mike. This is extremely
valuable information, and we have a lot of Facebook
questions from our viewers. In order to get to as many
questions as possible, I would like to ask you both
to keep your responses brief so that we can get through
as many as possible. So our first question
is, what happens if we lose our good standing
or rating during our college education? MR. DECESARE: So what
can happen if you lose your good standing or
rating is that that can limit your ability to keep playing. You’re expected to
maintain good grades, meet a certain GPA
requirements, set both byt he NCAA and by the
school you want to attend. And if you’re not
meeting that expectation, you won’t get to practice, you
won’t get to play in games, and also your scholarship
could be in jeopardy at the end of the day. So it’s incredibly important
to work just as hard in the classroom before
you get to college as you do once you get to college. MR. BOLL: So serious
consequences. Our next question
is, when should I start contacting coaches and can
I ask them about scholarships directly? MS. TURNER: So you can
always reach out to coaches. On most website there is a
contact form for prospects. And so if you wanted to
reach out to coaches, there’s that prospects form. You can call, you can email. There are no restrictions
on you reaching out first. And you can always talk
about scholarships. That’s something that
we would actually encourage students
to talk about, so that the expectation
is set upfront. MR. BOLL: Thank you Sarah, we’ve
got a good follow up question. What’s the best way to
contact the sports recruitment offices of each university? MS. TURNER: It depends
on each university, but I know a lot
of institutions use that form to get
as much information about students as possible. MR. BOLL: Thank you. So reach out. As Liam said, don’t hesitate. Use a form, but, you
know, send an email. MS. TURNER: [INAUDIBLE] email. [INAUDIBLE] MR. BOLL: Right. Next question is, do we need
to make NCAA registration by ourselves, or should our
club or federation do that? MR. DECESARE: That’s an
outstanding question. You know, we ask every student
to complete his or her own NCAA instability center registration. And the reason for that is
that at the end of the day, we’re going to certify you,
the individual student. So we’re looking for your
take on where you’ve played, what your grades are,
your test scores. And if we need
additional information, we’re going to go to the
student directly to get that. So we strongly encourage
the individual student to complete his or her own
Eligibility Center account. Certainly a club or a
federation can be a resource. That may be someone
we contact to gather additional information. But from our seat,
it always starts with the individual
student athlete. MR. BOLL: Thank
you, very valuable. Which sports are most popular
for international students? MS. TURNER: So we get a lot of
soccer players, tennis players, track is very popular,
as well as basketball. So those would be the top
sports, but for the most part we get international prospects
in probably all of our 19 sports, [INAUDIBLE]. MR. BOLL: Just a
follow on Sarah, so I assume that students
shouldn’t limit themselves just because a sport’s
popular, but in fact they should try and go for
whatever their sport is. MS. TURNER: Correct, yes if you
are passionate about your sport and want to play collegiate
athletics in America, reach out to the
coaches and figure out if there’s a team that
would be a good fit for you. MR. BOLL: OK, thank you. Our next question is, what
are the NCAA core course requirements? MS. TURNER: So this is one
where it’s by division. Each division has their
own credits that they need, but for the most part, we’re
looking for English language courses. If you’re educated in a country
that’s Spanish speaking, we will take those
Spanish classes. We will need mathematics
courses, science, social science, and
additional core. The biggest thing that
we want to point out is business and commerce
courses are not considered core. PE, art, music,
those are classes we would not be able to use
to certify you academically. MR. BOLL: So you’re looking
for well-rounded students. MS. TURNER: Correct. MR. BOLL: That’s fantastic. And it’s something that
we talk about a lot as one of the advantages
of the– you know, the American higher
education system generally. Our next question is, how
long is the certification process with the NCAA
Eligibility Center, and how much does it cost? MS. TURNER: So the
certification process– it can be very quick, or it
could take a little bit longer. If students register
after they’ve graduated, and they send all of
their documents at once and submit their
test scores, if we’ve got an account that’s
finalized and ready to go, we can finish the account
within 10 business says. If we need additional
clarification from the school, we can open new tests,
and then the timing depends on how long it takes
to have those tests satisfied. For the international
fee, if you have attended an
international institution for high school for years
nine and up, the fee is $135. MR. BOLL: Thank you. Our next question is
about scholarships. At what level of sport should
I be able to get a scholarship? So I guess, how good
do I have to be, expectations or standards? MR. DECESARE: You know, there’s
probably not a set standard necessarily. You know, the– probably
what we would suggest is, our coaches are looking
for well-rounded students that love to compete in their sport. And one thing our
coaches also look at is if they’re looking
at capable athletes, if we use soccer
example, and looked at, you had two talented
soccer players, like Liam, both very good at their
sport, and one is a– play year round,
play competitively. One is a much stronger student
than another, by and large, our coaches are going to
lean toward recruiting a stronger academic
student ahead of the one who’s not as strong. Partly for what we said before. If that student
shows that he can get it done in the
classroom, he’s going to have a great
chance of doing good work at his next university. And someone that
coach can count on to get the job done both
on and off the field. MR. BOLL: That’s fantastic. You know, that’s
a vision of saying we want students to
succeed, both academically and in sports, and in athletics. And it’s, you know,
it’s one of the things that we hear frequently from
people who engage EducationUSA around the world. They talk about what’s special
about American colleges and universities is that they
are focused on student success overall, whether it’s in– academically, in terms
of athletics, or overall. It’s– you know, the final
thing is success and moving on to the next part of your life
professionally and personally. Our next question is
about evaluations. How many people
evaluate an application at the NCAA Eligibility Center? MS. TURNER: So we don’t
have one case manager that’s assigned to a specific account. We have a team of
kids processors both on the academic
and the amateurism side. So everybody in
terms of efficiency is going through accounts
and trying to get them done. So there’s not one
specific person. On the customer service
side, we are the ones that if people email or call
in, that we will talk to you. It’s a pretty small team,
but we’re all able to help. MR. BOLL: Thank you. We have now a specific
question about specific sports. Do squash, judo, archery,
and shooting sports come under NCAA
eligibility requirements. MR. DECESARE: Another
really good question. Rifle would come under NCAA
eligibility requirements. judo would not. Squash would come
under NCAA requirements academically, for a
number of reasons, we do not provide an amateur
certification for squash. MR. BOLL: Thank you. What if students are interested
in playing more than one sport? How does that work? MR. DECESARE: Absolutely. And you know, we’re blessed that
we have a lot of talented what we call here multi-sport
athletes at our Division I and Division II schools. And we find our coaches
would just as well have someone who could
succeed in multiple sports. So from an eligibility
standpoint, you know, that student would still
receive one academic evaluation. And that would be good for
every two, three or four sports a student might want
to play in college. On the amateurism
certification side, the student would fill out
sports participation questions for each one of those sports. My team with amateurism
certification would in turn provide an
amateurism certification for each sport. You know, so that
could be soccer, that could be tennis, that
could be tracked and field. And once that student is
cleared amateur-wise to compete in those sports, he or
she can go ahead and play. There is not an additional fee. I think it’s important
to note that the $135 fee that Sarah
mentioned before would be the same if a
student played one sport or if a student played
two or more sports. MS. TURNER: It’s also
important to note that if you are a
professional in one sport, you can still be considered an
amateur athlete in a second. So if you’re a professional
soccer player that’s always wanted to be a kicker or
punter for a football team, give it a shot. MR. BOLL: That sounds like a
very practical and realistic approach, you know, geared
toward student realities. Thank you. So is there an age limit
for NCAA eligibility? MR. DECESARE: Yeah that’s a
very– very helpful question. So the NCAA doesn’t have
a maximum age at which you can no longer play your sport. What students should be mindful
of is that certain sports will have an age of– by which our schools
require you to come and get certified and start playing or
you could forfeit eligibility. A good example,
especially since this is a popular sport with
our international audience, would be men’s and
women’s tennis. Division I has a rule that says
if you turn 20 years of age before you come and play
at a Division I school, you can lose eligibility
for each year between your 20th birthday and
the time you come to school. A quick example would be a
21-year-old tennis player that enrolls at school
at 21, played tennis between age 20 and age 21, and
would lose a year of her tennis eligibility. A 22-year-old tennis
player would lose two years of her eligibility. So while there’s
not an age maximum, there are certain
age requirements by which our schools would
like you to get in, enroll and start competing. And it ties back to
something we said earlier, it’s the idea that we
want a level playing field, similar skilled to
athletes competing each other, not amateur competing
against professionals. MR. BOLL: Thank you very much. That’s great to hear, both
the spirit of openness as well as, you know, the need
to check requirements carefully and see where you stand. If– next question is, if
we don’t have a USA rating, how do we need to– do we
need to choose Division III during registration? MR. DECESARE: So my– go ahead, Sarah, I’m sorry. MS. TURNER: The USA
rating in sport? MR. BOLL: I guess. That’s how the question came in. MS. TURNER: So I think
it’s one of those things, if you are not sure that
you’re interested in attending a Division I or Division II
institution, we do encourage you to create that
profile page, if you are interested in coming to
the United States to compete. With that profile
page, it is free. It’s something that is available
to allow us to still provide communications and provide
updates with policy and what’s going on, and where
in the process you should be. But if you’re interested in
Division I or Division II and don’t have a USA rating,
still reach out to coaches. They may not need it to
be interested in the level of competition that
you’re able to bring. MR. BOLL: Thank you, thank you. A very practical question–
how do I submit my documents. If I mail originals,
can I get them back? MS. TURNER: We do not
return any documents, so please, please, please do
not mail any original documents. For us, we can accept
course school stamped copies of your original documents. So if you want to take your
originals to your school, have them print out copies
and add [INAUDIBLE] stamp, those can be mailed in to us. There are some changes coming,
and so if you’re currently going through the
recruiting process, or it’s something
that’s coming up, keep in touch with your
compliance officer, and they’ll be able
to let you know how to submit your documents
after the changes occur. MR. BOLL: So moral of the story,
read the instructions carefully and follow them. MS. TURNER: Yes, the test does
warn you, so it is out there. MR. BOLL: And I might
say to all students watching, that goes for
all parts of the admissions process. Read the instructions carefully,
follow them, get good advice. EducationUSA advisors,
you know, are on the ground in 180
countries and territories to help with that process. Our next question
is, what happens if a student fails
the certification process with the NCAA
Eligibility Center? Are there other
options if the student is still interested in
playing college sports? MS. TURNER: So we
suggest if you come out with a non-qualifier
decision, if you were not eligible to practice,
compete, and receive scholarship your
first year, talk with the college that
was recruiting you, or the different schools. They may have suggestions. They may allow you to
start internationally, your education internationally,
and then transfer in. I know some coaches suggest
junior colleges, which are two year
options, and then you can transfer in to the Division
I or Division II schools. It’s just important to keep
that line of communication open if you do receive a
non-qualifier decision. MR. DECESARE: And I might
add, from the amateurism side, that every one of our Division
I and Division II institutions, if a students does not get
certified as an amateur has an ability to
appeal that decision. And that’s something
you can talk about with the coach
that’s recruiting you, and the compliance office
at the institution you’re interested in attending. I’ll also stress that more
often than not on the amateurism side, it’s not a permanent
or complete restriction on your eligibility if
you have a limitation be placed on your account. Typically, the most
common restriction is that students will
be asked to sit out one year, their
first year on campus. We call that an academic
year in residence. And they’ll have something
less than a full four years of eligibility. So don’t let that be a,
you know, black and white deterrent to looking
at this option. It’s a great option. And your school will
work hard with you to try and see if a waiver
or another opportunity can go through so that
maybe you can play sooner. MR. BOLL: Fantastic advice. Our next question is, when
should I create, at what point should I create an account? Is there, like, a better
time or a worse time? MS. TURNER: If you’re
being recruited by an NCAA institution, go
ahead and create an account. The institution will go
ahead and use that account to monitor your
athletic status as well as your amateurism
certification process. If you’re not yet
being recruited and you are still
interested, we suggest registering during or towards
the end of your junior year. We do conduct
preliminary reviews. So if you start producing
your documentation, and you’re SAT or
ACT test score, we can take a look
at your account and let you know
where you are and let potentially interested
institution know where you fall as well. MR. BOLL: So junior means
two years before, right? Essentially. MS. TURNER: Yeah, your
third year in high school if you’re in a 12-year system. MR. BOLL: Got it. Thank you so much. So is there a minimum
required score for either the ACT or
the SAT for admission as an international
athlete on a scholarship? MS. TURNER: So just remember,
we are not the same thing as the admissions process. So for admissions
into a university, they’ll have their
own standards. On the academic side,
we have something called a sliding scale. So the higher your
GPA, more wiggle room you have with what kind of
test score you have to achieve. We do have a very nice, easy
to read chart on our website at ncaa.org/international. MR. BOLL: Thank you. I’m so happy we have this
next question, especially given the Paralympics
going on in South Korea. Are there any specific criteria
for international students with disabilities? MR. DECESARE: Specific criteria? Not necessarily. You know, the
review process is– it’s going to look the same,
you know, from the Eligibility Center’s end. It will be the same
academic review process and the same
amateurism review process. And probably a lot
of what we’ve said would be applicable, in terms
of getting your name out and communicating your interest
with head and assistant coaches about this opportunity
of playing at this level. So from from our
end, our experience has been not only the
certification process but the recruitment process,
and what it looks like on campus as you go through your
day to day with classes and conditioning and
going to practice and competing in your
sport is, you know, really substantially similar. MR. BOLL: Fantastic. So definitely
encouraging applications from students with
disabilities, especially in the spirit of
the Paralympics. And EducationUSA centers, our
advisors around the world, are well-prepared to talk to
students with disabilities about opportunities for
study in the United States across the board. Our next question is, can
an international student come to the U.S. to finish high
school and play for the school first, and then go to
college in America? Will this give them some kind
of an advantage in the process? MS. TURNER: I don’t think it
will provide an advantage, per se. The biggest thing that
we want to point out is, if you do not graduate from
your international high school and you come to
the United States, and start school as
an American student, we have for Division I a
core course time limit. So you have to complete all
your requirements within a time limit, as well as something
called a 10-7 progression requirement. We need 10 of your credits
from English, math, science, social science, and
additional core, with 7 being in English,
math, or science, to be completed before the
start of your seventh semester in school. So a lot of times,
one of the things that becomes very
important is when you do make that
switch over to America, talk with the high school
guidance counselors at your new American
high school. Ask them what
requirements they still need you to meet, as
well as make sure you are not completing
duplicative coursework. We want to make sure
that we give you the most advantageous
certification possible, and we can’t do that if you’re
taking duplicative coursework. MR. BOLL: Thank
you so much, Sarah. So how long after
graduating from high school from secondary school does
a student have to apply to– does he have, or he or she
have, to apply to a Division I or Division II school? MR. DECESARE: I
can take that one. There’s not necessarily
a time limit. It really kind of
in part depends on how soon after graduating
from a secondary school that student wants to come
over here and go to college and compete in his or her sport. I will tell you for for all
intents and purposes, though, our coaches for the
coming academic year– and we can use this
fall as an example– most of their recruitment
will be done by early spring. In fact, you know, coaches
are signing students to national letters of
intent for those sports. So promising scholarship
money is one of the things Sarah pointed out
earlier, is that you know, a lot of students
will register, you know, one year prior to
wanting to come to an NCAA college or university
so that they can get their account reviewed,
be on the radar of our coaches, and, you know, have
the opportunity to come to our colleges
the fall semester following their graduation. I will point out one
additional thing, is that many but not
all of our schools will admit student
athletes both in the fall and what we call mid-year. Mid-year is also what we refer
to as a winter or a spring academic term. In fact, about 10% to 12% of
our prospective student athletes enroll mid-year every year. So while the bulk of them do
come to school in the fall, we get a considerable
population that will come to school in
January or February each year. So it’s just important
to, you know, be in dialogue with with
your coach, what sport you’re interested in playing, and
what that coach’s needs are– you know, when they’re
looking for you to come on and join the team. MS. TURNER: It’s
also important, based on the amateurism section, the
delayed enrollment component. So you, for most sports, will
only get a one year grace period after your expected
date of high school graduation before you have to enroll as a
full time university student, or we need you to stop
competing in your sport. So that’s another
component that coaches will considere to make sure
that when you do come in, you come in with all four
seasons of eligibility, and you come in with the ability
to start competing right away. MR. BOLL: Thank you both,
that’s fantastic advice. It just emphasizes, again, how
flexible U.S. higher education is, how open it is. That’s something
that, you know, we’ve got 425 plus advising
centers all around the world, and our advisors are always
emphasizing that point, our basic services are for free. And so we hope students will
come and get more information. Another question that in the
Olympic spirit, have you– if you have competed
at an Olympic level and even won a medal,
are you eligible to be certified with the NCAA? MR. DECESARE: Yeah. That’s a great question,
and certainly– certainly a timely one. You know, there is not a
restriction from the NCAA on, you know, competing
in the Olympics, or earning a medal
in the Olympics. You know, the things that
we try and direct to is that it’s something that’s
shown up on the slide earlier, and that Sarah
mentioned a minute ago. You know, we are looking for
athletes who do not financially profit from playing their sport. So if you’re in your
country’s Olympic pool, and you’re offered money,
you know, as an incentive for winning a medal or
making the finals, your best bet from an NCAA
standpoint, would be not to take that money. You know, that can have an
impact on your eligibility. Similarly, you know,
there are time limitations after you finish secondary
school in which you can compete without forfeiting eligibility. But, you know, as kind of a,
you know, more blanket response, we see dozens of both what we
call incoming college bound student athletes as well as
our own student athletes who compete, represent
their countries, and do a great job
at the Olympics, and are able, then,
to in turn come back and play NCAA college athletics. So, you know, we would
encourage students, you know, know before you go. You know, know what you can and
can’t do from an eligibility standpoint. And otherwise, go out
there and, you know, represent yourself
and your country well and compete at your best. MR. BOLL: Fantastic advice. So essentially everybody
has to do their homework, and they have to know that
there are consequences– any step may have consequences. And so– MR. DECESARE: [INAUDIBLE] And
the NCAA compliance office can be really
helpful with the dos and do nots with
those questions, too. MR. BOLL: That’s fantastic,
that’s a great resource. MS. TURNER:
[INAUDIBLE],, for those that maybe aren’t
being recruited yet, but want some general
advice on the rules. So again, we’ve got a lot of
resources, just give us a call. MR. BOLL: That’s fantastic. So is there a deadline? When should I mail
my documents in? MS. TURNER: So there’s
no deadline for us. You just can’t be eligible
for practice, competition, and scholarship until you
finish your Eligibility Center account. So we encourage students,
after you graduate, especially, to start getting your documents
in sooner rather than later. Because a lot of colleges, if
you’re going to a university, a lot of sports may
report in August. So get your documents in
early, see if we can go ahead and finalize your
account so that you can go through the visa
process, get your I-20, and start on campus for
orientation and for practice. MR. BOLL: Thank you, and
for students watching, we have archived interactive
web chats on the visa process. If you’re interested, you
can find those on YouTube. Do all Division I and II schools
offer athletic scholarships? MR. DECESARE: Sure, I’m
happy to answer that one. The amount of scholarship–
it really varies by the school and by the sport. You know, we have sports that– for example, Division
I basketball, which offers full scholarships,
covers the costs of attendance. Other sports, we could call
those equivalency sports, and they will have
a pool of money that, it’s up to the
coach how the coach wants to divide that pool of
money among her roster. And you know, what’s usually
a determining factor for that coach is, you know,
the players that are getting it done in the
classroom, the players that are working hard on
and off the field, are probably going
to get a larger– larger share of that money. But probably the
biggest takeaway is that, you know, while all of
our Division I and II colleges and universities offer
scholarships for those sports, those amounts can
vary, and often do vary, by the particular
college or university. So a great tip to
everyone watching today is, as you’re talking to
coaches at different colleges and universities,
you know, be candid. Ask them what they
have available, because what one
school has available could differ from
another school. MS. TURNER: And between
the divisions, as well. Division I can offer
multi-year scholarships, and so you can know going in for
all four years, or potentially five years as well, what
amount of scholarship you’re going to receive. For Division II, they only
offer year to year scholarships, currently. So every year your
scholarship has to be renewed. MR. BOLL: So I think we have
the perfect follow on question, which is, is there a
website or reference that provides a list of sports
that universities and teams are looking for– for example, a website that
would show which schools are actively looking for cyclists? MS. TURNER: Cyclist
is not an NCAA sport. Triathlon is, but
cycling is not. We don’t have a list that
would specifically say what each institution would need. What we do have, on
ncaa.org, under the about us, there is the ability
to search for a sport by school or by
division, and then you can go on and use that
as your starting point for contacting schools that you
may be interested in attending. MR. BOLL: Thank you. So very specific question. Can you explain redshirting? Can a student be NCAA
certified and recruited at the school, but redshirt
to improve academic standing? MS. TURNER: This is a decision
that’s made by the coach. If a student comes in
and the coach decides for the first year, we’re
going to have you sit out from all competition, a
lot of times they’ll say, we’re going to redshirt
you your first year. That is one way it happens. The other is for
Division I there’s something called
academic redshirt, for an academic decisions. So if you were close to
meeting requirements, but not, you won’t
be able to compete. That’s something that
we actually force on you and force on the coach. MR. BOLL: OK, thank you. So is having a sponsor an
obstacle to eligibility? MR. DECESARE: Very
good question. It can be, you know,
full disclosure. You know, so the things that we
would look for with the sponsor is, what is the sponsor doing,
and is the sponsor providing you something different
or in addition because you’re a
talented athlete? NCAA rules will limit
students from receiving funding money that is more than
their expenses for competing in that sport. So, you know, we certainly have
plenty of eligible students who use individual
sponsors, who fundraise, who have sponsorships that will
cover the cost of competing in their sport. Because we get it. Playing sport is
expensive, and especially for talented athletes who
play a lot, like the ones we’re talking to today. So biggest thing
to keep in mind is, that there are limits
to what you can take, and you know those
limits are, you shouldn’t have more
money than your costs at the end of the day. But to answer the
question, no, there’s not a quote unquote
“restriction” against a student having a sponsor. MR. BOLL: OK, thank you both. Unfortunately, we’re
almost out of time. Mike and Sarah, do– does each of you
have a final thought for our friends on Facebook? MS. TURNER: So I think the one
thing that we want to just make sure that y’all know i, we
didn’t get to everything about our process today. So please utilize our
resources, please contact us if you have questions. It is a difficult and
complicated process. That’s something
that we understand. But because we do
understand that, we want to make
sure that you know where to go for your questions. So, again, the most
important thing for us on the customer service side
for international students– there is that
contact form that’s on the international web page. So please check it out. Please check out our
resources, and let us know if you have questions. MR. BOLL: That’s fantastic. Thank you both so much
for joining us today. And of course, thank you to
our international student Liam. Very special thanks
to our viewing groups gathered around the world,
including a viewing group gathered at the
Fulbright commission in Ottawa, Canada, host of the
EducationUSA advising center. There’s also EducationUSA
St. Kitta and Nevis, Education Abuja in Nigeria,
and the American Corner EducationUSA Center
in Bitola, Macedonia. Thanks to you all. You can find more information
about studying in the United States by visiting the
EducationUSA website at www.educationusa.state.gov. there you can find
information on the five steps to U.S. study locate
an EducationUSA center in your country, one
of 426 around the world, connect with us
via social media, learn about both in-person
and virtual upcoming events, research financial aid
opportunities, and much more. Thank you, and please join
us for future EducationUSA interactive web chats. Goodbye from Washington.

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