College Skiing Scholarships
Although there are not many schools with a skiing team, there are still opportunities to earn a college skiing scholarship. Both men and women can earn skiing scholarships to compete in college, whether it’s alpine skiing or Nordic skiing. However, if a school just offers one, it’s most likely to be alpine. With both international and domestic competition, it is important for skiers to market themselves to coaches if they want a shot at earning a scholarship.
Skiing Scholarship Fundamentals
There are a total of 36 NCAA Men’s skiing programs and 38 NCAA Women’s Skiing programs in the U.S., most of which are located in the Northeast.
NCAA Division I programs has 6.3 scholarships per team for Men and 7 for women; in Division II they have 6.3 scholarships for men and 6.3 for women. The coach can divide these amongst the team as they choose because NCAA Skiing is considered to be an equivalency sport.
The top skiing programs in the U.S. include: University of Denver, University of Colorado (Boulder), University of Vermont, University of Alaska, Dartmouth, Bates, and more.
Gauge Your Abilities
Coaches are looking for talented, well-rounded skiers to strengthen their programs. But college level skiing is highly competitive, so how do you know if you’ll fit? It’s always a good idea to go check out a college level skiing event or tournament, so you get a good idea of what your skill level needs to be. You can also check out college skiing camps which will help you get noticed by schools and help you understand what programs are looking for in scholarship skiers.
Full, Partial, and Walk-On Scholarships
Because there are so few college skiing programs, the opportunities for scholarships are there, but are difficult to earn. If you have the right combination of athletic skill and academic strength, you could earn any one of three types of scholarships. Full Scholarships are tuition scholarships that cover most expenses endured during college. Partial scholarships account for part of the costs of college like books and room and board. Walk-On scholarships are earned after an athlete tries out for a team and makes the cut, earning a scholarship once they are already at school.
College coaches aren’t always going to find potential student-athletes on their own. Being proactive in your recruiting can make or break your chance at a skiing scholarship. This means you need to put together a resume that highlights your skiing and academic achievements, and get in contact with college coaches whose programs interest you. Coaches recognize the maturity and responsibility that it takes to contact them so this will set you apart from other skiers.