FAQ about being a student-athlete

Get answers to the most common questions about college athletics, sports scholarships, and what it’s like to be a student-athlete.

A student-athlete is a student who practices sports while being enrolled in an educational program. Student-athletes are common in the US and Canada, thanks to the countries’ college sports systems, which also offer the possibility of students being rewarded with sports scholarships to help finance the studies and sports practice.

Yes, UK and other international students are also eligible for athletic scholarships in America. Keystone Sports have more than 20 years of experience in assisting athletes from all over the world to combine college sports with higher education in the USA and Canada. Fill out our assessment form, and our sport placement experts will evaluate your scholarship opportunities for free! 

There are several ways to get recruited by a college coach and obtain a sports scholarship. With Keystone Sports’ college sports recruiting service, our sports placement experts successfully connect you with college coaches across the US and Canada, all based on your wishes, skills, and needs. 

 
 

We recommend that you start the college recruiting process during your junior year, ideally 1-2 years prior to graduation. By starting early, you will have enough time for all the necessary steps. With Keystone Sports, you have a dedicated team supporting you every step of the way. From finding your dream college and getting in touch with your future college coach to preparing for admission tests (TOEFL and SAT) and completing the necessary paperwork for the student visa and the college application.

You can obtain sports scholarships for over 20 college sports. Find out more about the various college sports here. We at Keystone Sports have experience in supporting athletes from all types of sporting backgrounds – we find the perfect fit for you! 

College sports recruiting refers to the process in which a university representative recruits an athlete to play for their school’s team. This representative, often the team coach, can discover athletes at regular competitions and tournaments. Other excellent opportunities for recruitment to attend showcases and events where coaches are invited for recruiting purposes. Another way to increase the chances of getting discovered is by using the Alliance app—a student-athlete recruiting app used by over 2,000 American college coaches. 

There are different college divisions because there are various associations for college sports. The two major ones are the NCAA (National Collegiate Athletic Association) and the NAIA (National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics). There are three NCAA divisions (D1, D2, and D3) and NAIA division 1 and Division 2. There is also NJCAA (National Junior College Athletic Association), which oversees athletics on community colleges and junior colleges in the US. 

NCAA and NAIA are two different associations overseeing student-athletes in the US. They each have their own set of rules, regulations, terms, sport scholarships, and college sports divisions. 

A sports scholarship is financial aid awarded to students who participate in college sports while pursuing their university studies.

 
 

Sports scholarships help student-athletes cover university costs such as tuition, books, dormitory fees, and expenses related to their sports practice. Scholarships can be either full (“full rides”) or partial. 

To obtain a college sports scholarship, you need an excellent track record in your sport, both in the past and currently. Additionally, you require a strong academic profile, which includes not only a high GPA (grade point average) but also strong performance on college admission tests. 

Yes, different scholarships can be combined, such as a sports scholarship, an academic scholarship and scholarships for international students. This allows you to maximize the benefits and financial support during your time studying abroad.