The College To Do List-
Freshman & Sophomores – Get your name out there. Reply to all colleges that are interested in you and return all questionnaires. College coaches start their data bases on kids now!
Juniors & Seniors – You must attend to everything in this letter and it is urgent now that you get writing and communicating with the college coaches. E-mail Katie White if you have any further questions, but everything is pretty clear.
By now your brain is probably loaded with questions on how to attack the college scene. Hopefully this will give you some solid advice for chasing down your answers. If you have any questions – please ask!
Seacoast United coaches are fully involved in the recruiting process, unanimously college coaches have stated that they want all recruiting conversations to be with the athlete, not parents or coaches; simply because they are recruiting an individual, whom they would like to get to know. Your personality coming through in an interview, e-mail or phone conversation will help them determine how you will fit in with their current team and how you will handle the pressures of college academics and athletics. Seacoast United offers individual recruiting meetings with athletes and parents and does meet monthly to go over where each athlete depending on YOG should be in the recruiting process. Please never hesitate to set up a meeting or with questions at any time.
The most important part of the recruiting process begins with your high school grades. College coaches start every conversation with the question, “how are your grades?" As hard as you work on the field, you must work twice as hard in the classroom. Extra help, SAT tutoring and summer school are very common for all athletes preparing to play a sport in college. The second most important recruiting fact is being proactive! Go after every lead, get in front of coaches, ask questions, schedule campus visits, go to camps and clinics, and get to know coaches and assistants; if you don’t make every effort to sell yourself and to take every opportunity to play in front of college coaches another athlete will step up and take your spot. That is a FACT!
Why you choose a certain college should be based upon your likes and dislikes. Knowing yourself and what you want will lead you to find YOUR school. You should understand that if you play at a top Division I, II or III program, you will be devoting a majority of your time to the sport you play. If you are playing on a Division I scholarship, understand that they will in essence own you.
Develop your college list – make it as many as you want (reach and easy schools)
1.Academics / Activities– can you get into the school? Once you are there can you maintain the level they will expect? Do they have what interests you academically? Do I want big classes or small classroom experiences? Talk to your guidance counselor and understand where you are academically. YOU determine the schools that will be interested in you, by YOUR GRADES. So you will either shut doors or open them with your GRADES! Field hockey can open a door, but your grades must keep it open! Ask for letters of recommendation NOW! Start a file on them, not just for college but for scholarship opportunities down the road. Know your SAT and PSAT scores and GPA. Do you want to take the ACTS? Develop your extracurricular activity list! Colleges want well rounded students!
2. Size of school – small (less than 4,000) medium (4 – 10,000) large (10,000 +)
3. Location - How far do you want to travel? Do you want your parents to attend your games? Do you want to be able to get home or do you want to try going further?
4. Student life – Is this party school? Too academic? When you walk on campus do you feel like this is it? You should get a feeling that this is MY school. What atmosphere are you looking to have in a school?
5. Athletics– Ask your coach (club or high school) where she/ he thinks you will fit in best. They will offer you the best advice where they think you will be successful. In the end though it is you that must decide what you want to achieve in college. Do you want to be a National Champion? Or a Conference Champion? Do you want to compete at the D3 level? All are noteworthy achievements. . .which one is best for you? Once this is established – look for college teams and coaches that emulate what you want from a team. Remember these are your teammates for 4 years and you will be spending a major part of your college life with these girls.
Still confused about which school is right for you? Go by the “broken leg” rule. Look at the school by itself. If something were to happen to you and you were never able to play hockey again, would you still love where you are? If the answer is no…get this school off your list!
The College Visits
1. Go out there and look first – take road trips with your parents to get a feel for the schools your’re interested in and how far away you want to travel. Slim your list to 10 – 15 by fall of your senior year.
2. Then visit the ones you really liked on officials (paid visits) Division I - 5 are permitted – Division III do not count in that 5.
3. Make a list of pros and cons as soon as you leave that school on the ride home. The pros – what you loved. The cons – what you didn’t love. For example; Did you love the girls? Are they like your friends at home? Did you love the coach?
Communication with the college coaches
Now is the time to reach out via letters and e-mails. College coaches cannot speak to you until your senior year and they want to hear from you – NOT your parents, so get your name and information on their radar.
1. Resume’ - You should have a resume by now detailing your personal statistics and accomplishments in sports ( all sports – from 9th through 12th grade) It should be 1 page and include a picture. Also include your high school schedule and club season schedule if they are available.
2. Video – You should be making a highlight video. It should start with you standing or sitting and introducing yourself. You should state your name, team, and jersey number. Then include snippets of games. Not just the goals – of the action leading to the goal or the defensive play. College coaches want well rounded athletes – so if you are an attacker – show them a goal and an assist. A defender should show interceptions as well as good off ball defensive marking and positioning. Lastly – give them your ability to handle the ball in a drill like setting. The entire video should be no more than 8 minutes!
3. When you respond or write e-mails – always put your high school / club name and first and last name in the subject line.
4. Announcements; Pre - When you are attending an event – Festival, Disney, Indoor tourneys, etc. Always let the colleges know – Let them know your name, team, color and jersey number. They will find you when they make their schedule. Then add your name, e-mail and phone number where they can reach you.
Post Event / After the event – follow up again with an e-mail. “Thank you for taking the time to come to my game. Here are other venues where you can see me play.” And again – leave your contact information.
5. Questionnaires – Fill them out. Even if you are not interested – do them. College coaches are friends with other college coaches and they talk! They will communicate with each other and compare – if you are rude to one – they will all know – if you do not return information, you may not get a second chance to look at that school. If they ask you where you stand and you do not know . . Be Honest! Tell them you are interested but at the time you may have a couple of schools you like more. . . Or I would love to take a trip to see your school. They will be the ones that offer the official to you.
Please contact Sarah Richards for further help - firstname.lastname@example.org