Scholarships Tips

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How can I get a scholarship?

Staying Close To Home, Part 1

If you're looking for a scholarship, don't overlook your local colleges. They're most likely to be interested in having you play for them, in fact, so they'll be more likely to offer you a scholarship than a school from across the country.

The are some sound reasons:

hey're much more likely to have seen you play, so they have an idea of what you can do and what you can add to their own program. Stats are nice, but there's nothing like seeing a player in a game to get a sense of what they can do.`

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How can I get a scholarship?

The Scholarship Process, Part 3

The think you always want to bear in mind is that you are a marketable commodity, and colleges want you. But it's your responsibility to let college coaches know you exist and are interested in playing for their school.

So never be afraid to contact college coaches, especially through your own high school coach. Remember, colleges truly WANT to hear from you. So talk with your coach, and begin to let as many college coaches know of your interest as you want. Then let the offers roll in.

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How can I get a scholarship?

Getting A Scholarship, Part 2

If you have a particular school in mind, you'll want to contact that school's coach. The best way is through your coach, who will be glad to help. Remember, though, your grades will also come into play here, too, so don't neglect your studies!

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How can I get a scholarship?

Getting A Scholarship, Part 4

Your criteria for choosing schools to apply to should also include how far away they are, as well. If they're clear on the other side of the country, you may not be able to visit the campus and get a feel for the school, which can be important, because you're going to be there for awhile, and you need to be comfortable.

Unless the school agrees to pay to bring you to the campus, you're going to have to find a way to get there at your own expense, so it can be an expensive process.

Choosing schools within driving distance can save you and your parents alot of money, and you may find the perfect program much closer to home than you thought.

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How can I get a scholarship?

When to Start Looking For A Scholarship

If you really have a particular school or several schools, that you'd like to attend, it's not too early to begin letting those college coaches know about you in your junior year. That gives them the opportunity to have two years to come see you play in person, if they have an interest.

You might also want to have someone videotape your games, so you can offer tapes to potential colleges. Don't send them unless they ask to see them, but it never hurts to offer, especially if your chosen schools are far away.

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How can I get a scholarship?

What if No One Wants Me?

Even if you can't attract a scholarship right out of school, you still may be able to earn one later on, by becoming a "walk on." Walk on's simply get permission from the coach to try out for the team without the benefit of a scholarship. After a time, if you prove yourself, it's entirely possible you may be awarded a scholarship in your second year of play.

If you believe in yourself and really want to play, try the walk on route. You just may get that scholarship, after all.

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How can I get a scholarship?

Getting A Scholarship, Part 1

Every high school player, if they love the game and would like to continue playing at the next level, gives thought to trying to find a scholarship to help make that dream possible.

If that description fits you, you'll have several factors to consider. First of all, do you have a particular school in mind?

If you want to target a particular school, you'll need to first know if they even give out scholarships. Many smaller schools don't. You can find that out through your coach or the school's website.

   
How can I get a scholarship?

Staying Close To Home, Part 2

Another reason your local college wants you more than a school from faraway has to do with economics. If they can recruit players from an easy driving distance from their school, a college knows that friends and family members will be more likely to come and watch their matches. That translates into ticket sales, as well as the various merchandise the school sells; t-shirts, hats, etc.

Getting local athletes increases school revenue, and that's always a consideration for any program.

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How can I get a scholarship?

Getting A Scholarship, Part 5

Don't be afraid to toot your own horn. If you've got great stats and a bunch of accolades to your credit (all-conference, all-state, etc.) make sure all the schools you and your coach contact know about them. Chances are, if you haven't gotten you picture in Volleyball Magazine as one of the outstanding high school players of the year, most colleges don't know about you. LET them know!

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How can I get a scholarship?

The Scholarship Process, Part 2

Once you and your coach have contacted the school you're interested in, you won't have much else from that point on. In nearly case I've seen, the college you contacted will now contact YOU, since they know you're interested in attending their school.

Think about it this way: there are so many athletes playing high school ball that it's impossible for college coaches to know about all of them. Yet college coaches build their program by recruiting outstanding athletes, wherever they might be found.

Once they hear about a player who is interested in their program, they quickly take action to follow that lead. It's their job, after all, to find athletes who can help their program improve.

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How can I get a scholarship?

Don't Overlook Smaller Colleges, Part 2

Although they don't offer scholarships, per se, you can get financial help from smaller colleges and universities. In order to help you attend their school and play for their program, a smaller school can offer you attractive financing options, as well as work study programs to help earn extra money while you're attending the school.

There are plenty of other options offered by schools, and each program will be different. Check into their packages, and you may find yourself being enjoying the experience of being a "big frog in a small pond," since athletes at the smaller schools tend to be recognized to a greater extent than at the huge universities.

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How can I get a scholarship?

The Scholarship Process, Part 1

Here's how the process works, if you're not a player who has gathered tons of exposure as an all-state standout (which is a large group, considering how few players actually make those lists).

YOU need to let coaches know you're out there, first and foremost. College coaches build their programs based on recommendations from high school coaches across the country. (As a coach, I get dozens of letters every year from colleges asking me to send info on promising players.)

Here's a personal example of how the process works: This year, one of my players asked me to approach a particular college in her behalf, and I was happy to help.

I emailed her stats and a personal letter of recommendation to that school's coach, and in just a few days, I got a lovely email from the coach, thanking me for letting her know about my player.

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How can I get a scholarship?

Using Club Ball To Get Scholarships

Sometimes, club ball can be your ticket to a scholarship. The advantage of club ball is that it takes place after the regular high school season, and continues after the college season has ended, as well. That means college coaches have more time to get out to a club tournament and watch players perform.

So it's not unheard of for a club player to hear from a college program, even if that program's coach has never seen that player in a high school match.

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How can I get a scholarship?

Don't Overlook Smaller Colleges, Part 1

Many smaller colleges and universities don't offer scholarships, but still offer terrific opportunities to play some great volleyball. For instance, a small college from my home state of Iowa (Central College, out of Pella) has won the National Division III NCAA Championship for the past two years, and they are a great volleyball team, with outstanding athletes. I've seen them play several times, and they are a joy to watch.

So even though you may not be able to interest a Division I school in your talents, that in no way means you can't continue your volleyball career at the next level.

Look into the smaller schools. They're very eager to hear from you, even though they can't give you a full ride.

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How can I get a scholarship?

Staying Close To Home, Part 4

Another reason colleges like to recruit local talent has to do with FUTURE recruiting. If they can attract a local star to their program, younger players who come to see the team play will identify with that player, and be more likely to be interested in attending that school after graduation. Recruiting local athletes makes future recruiting easier for the school.

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How can I get a scholarship?

Staying Close To Home, Part 3

A third reason for recruiting athletes from a college's local area has to do with "sticking it out." If a player is close enough to be able to drive home for an occasional weekend, or to have friends and family members visit the campus occasionally will be much more likely to stay in the program for their entire academic career.

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How can I get a scholarship?

Getting A Scholarship, Part 3

If you're not particular about which school you go to, that gives you more flexibility, which is always helpful. Your coach can help you by contacting as many schools as interest you, offering stats and any personal information you want to give them.

You will want to do some homework, though, especially concerning academic requirements for each school. Even if they may want you as a player, you'll still need to meet school admission standards.

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