What does PLAY-USA do?
PLAY-USA provides an all inclusive sports scholarship service for student athletes who want to travel to america to compete in their sport, whilst also studying for a degree. Once you’ve made your application to PLAY-USA, we will assess your academic and athletic eligibility, and if we think there is an opportunity there for you, we will work with you every step of the way – to make sure you are matched with the right sports scholarship, at the right university, with the right degree.
What is a sports scholarship and what does it include?
A sports scholarship is where you receive funding from a university to study for a degree and compete in your sport. A full scholarship will provide you with enough funding to cover all university fees. A partial scholarship award will mean that you will have to contribute some money towards your university expenses.
What will I have to pay for?
Even on a full sports scholarship, you will have to pay for your travel to and from America, a health insurance plan, plus everyday living expenses. In many instances, a full scholarship will cover the cost of accommodation and food on campus.
As a minimum standard, you would normally need to have at least five A* to C GCSE’s. You are also required to take either an SAT or ACT exam. The combination of your SAT or ACT exam along with your GCSE results will ultimately determine the level of university you will be accepted into. The PLAY-USA team will guide you through this process and all others you will be required to complete.
At what level do I need to be playing my sport to be eligible for a scholarship?
This varies widely from university to university. Typically you would be playing your sport at a county standard. Universities are also looking for people who are self motivated and team players. Please click on Your Sport on the menu bar to find out if your sport has scholarships available.
How long does a sports scholarship application take?
This can vary, but typically we recommend that you allow at least a year to complete all elements of the application and recruitment processes.
How long will my degree be?
Typically, an American bachelors degree last for four years.
What can I expect on a day to day basis when studying on a sports scholarship?
On a sports scholarship, you would be expected to train every day, compete for the university whilst also attending classes to work towards gaining your degree. Your degree subject does not have to be sport-related. You can study whatever you want – law, business, aviation, engineering, marine biology. The list goes on.
Why do universities offer scholarships?
Sports Scholarships are common practice in America. It is the general consensus that a university with high performing sports teams is a good university, therefore making it desirable to students. Universities employ coaches to professionally manage their teams, ensuring they get to compete throughout America with athletes from all over the world.
How much holiday am I likely to get when studying in America?
Depending on your sport, and when your sport season starts and ends, you would typically get at least two months summer holiday, plus around two weeks at Christmas – and let’s not forget Spring Break – giving you ample opportunity to travel or come back to the UK to see friends and family.
What is the NCAA?
The NCAA stands for National Collegiate Athletic Association. They are the organization responsible for overseeing the college sports competitions at over 1,200 college athletic departments. The NCAA is “committed to the student-athlete and to govern competition in a fair, safe, inclusive and sportsmanlike manner.”
What is the NAIA?
The National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics is the organizing body that oversees college athletics for its member schools. Schools who are members of the NAIA are made of smaller colleges located in the United States and Canada. The NAIA was established in 1952, as an organization to establish competition between colleges. The NAIA sponsors 13 different sports and runs 23 annual championships for those sports, in both men’s and women’s athletics.
The NAIA has different member schools than the NCAA, and have different Eligibility requirements as well. To make sure you are eligible to compete at an NAIA school, you need to register with the NAIA Eligibility Center – this is something we will guide you through.