Sunday, January 11, 2009

Contacting Colleges: A Guide For Parents and Athletes

by Peter Brewer, Castro Valley High School Coach
revised 1/04/09

This is a topic that has come up more and more in recent years. At times some of our athletes have received general interest letters from colleges, and other runners want to get letters too. It tickles the fancy of runners to get letters, and there is a bit of status involved. However, there is a larger subject that the college letters are just a smaller part of --Running in college & college scholarships

Can high school athletes compete in college? -- Absolutely

Castro Valley High has had good success in the past few years having athletes that have gone on to compete in college. However, this is not limited to Castro Valley, and all high schools have athletes with college-level potential. There are college possibilities for competition and scholarships at every possible level. The box shows recent Castro Valley athletes who have or are competing in college, but this could as easily be any other school

Can running help pay for college? -- There is no doubt

With the rising cost of everything, and the necessity of a college education to secure the best
possibilities for a successful future for our children, expenses become a primary concern. Yes, running can help cut the cost of college, perhaps even dramatically. NCAA Division I and Divsion II colleges can offer athletic scholarships. NCAA Division III colleges cannot offer athletic money, but there are many academic scholarships that coaches have access to. NAIA schools (usually smaller academies and religious colleges) have no restrictions on the amount or the number of scholarships, and many have very large endowment funds to draw from. Junior Colleges, esecially those outside of California, often offer money to athletes.

How do I get noticed by colleges? -- Send them an e-mail

Well, colleges have a huge number of athletes and races and results to go through, and they don’t
always get to all the athletes. The very top athletes get lots of attention but the athletes near the top need to promote themselves to the colleges. Coaches really appreciate having information come to them in their e-mail in-box, since that is one less search they need to make. Recruiting is a big part of the college coaches’ job, and your input helps them out.

What do I put in this e-mail? --

This is a very good question. You need to look at it from the coaches’ viewpoint. They have to know how to contact you, and they need to know your academic achievements as well. Grades do count when it comes to recruiting. Then you need to list your academic goals. Finally, you get to put down your athletic accomplishments. You will also need a coaches’ assessment statement, and contact info for the coach (that’s me). Including a picture of you in competition helps too.

If you are interested in reading the rest of this article, please email me at and I will send you the entire article in pdf format. Sorry for the hassle but I am not able to upload pdf files on this blog.

1 comment:

Kevin Liao said...

This is very helpful. Thanks to Coach Brewer for putting this together.

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