Identifying Schools

There are over 1000 collegiate soccer programs on both the Men's and Women's sides. So how do you go about finding the school that's meant for you? There are a number of key factors that student-athletes might use in order to find colleges that meet their needs. Here are some of the most important.

  1. Location - Do you want to attend a school that's close to home, or perhaps to experience a different part of the country? Narrowing down schools of interest by location can be a great place to start.

  1. Size of the School - Do you want to attend a big school or a small school? Can you learn in an environment where there are hundreds of students in a class (big school) or do you prefer smaller class sizes? Do you want to experience all that might come with a big school (football, basketball, social activities, etc) or do those things not interest you? Would you rather be a part of a small community where you have the opportunity to really connect with your professors and the community as a whole?

  1. Academic Programs of Interest -Do you have a sense of what you might want to study? Does the school offer the major/minor and academic programs you might be interested in?

  1. Culture of the School - each college or university has its own distinct feel. Some schools are huge with a lively social scene (fraternities and sororities). Others are small and perhaps religious, with a certain faith forming the backbone of many student's worldview. How important is the school's culture in your college search? Is there a certain campus vibe that you are looking for?

  1. Cost of school - the cost of a school is an essential factor in the college search process. Having an open dialogue about what your family can afford, and then targeting schools in the appropriate ballpark range is smart. It's important to note that there are not many athletic scholarships for soccer players and often times families will have some costs to cover to send their son/daughter to college. Make sure the schools you are considering make sense from a financial perspective.

Check out the following link to explore schools using a variety of different criteria: https://bigfuture.collegeboard.org/college-search