One of the best investments you can make in yourself is a College education. It can also be one of the most expensive. Thankfully though, all your hard work, dedication and determination in Cheerleading, dance or gymnastics could help defray the costs.
Many colleges and universities offer Cheerleading/Athletic scholarships as well as academic ones. There are also numerous need-based grants and loans offered by state and federal agencies.
The key to getting any College/University financial aid is really quite simple. It all comes down to four basic factors - Who, What, When, and Where.
- Decide where you want to attend College. If possible, travel there and tour the campus and facilities.
- Use the Internet to research schools and programs.
- Consider the cost of traveling to and from school and home.
- Consider the cost of living in that area.
- Find out who is the coach or advisor for your sport.
- Find out who is in charge of the school's financial aid department.
- Contact these people and express your interest in applying for a scholarship/financial aid. Many College Cheerleading programs have Web sites and e-mail addresses for their coaches/advisors. Remember to be professional in all correspondences.
- If you are still in high school, talk to your high school counselor. There maybe local scholarships available for graduating seniors.
- Discuss your plans with your parents.
- Find out what is available as far as financial aid/scholarships or grants.
- Make note of all the requirements. (Some colleges require videos and references in addition to their try out requirements).
- Prepare yourself for try outs. Know exactly what is expected of you.
- Prepare your paper work and have your financial records handy.
- Find out when all deadlines are and be sure to meet them. It's best to be early in the event you encounter problems.
- Follow up on anything you've submitted. Keep copies and good records of everything.
This may all seem overwhelming to begin with, but what better way is there to spend your time and efforts than on yourself and your future? Good Luck!
NOTE: If you are a Cheerleading coach and your school offers Cheerleading scholarships, please send me an email with the details, so we may add it to our site.