For some people, getting scholarships are crucial toward obtaining a college degree. With the price of a degree setting millions of people in debt, finding a way to ease that financial burden without having to pay it back is one way to alleviate stress both now and in the future. Sports scholarships are the easiest to come by for high school athletes, and while ice hockey is no exception, getting one for the sport is one you need to start years before graduation. Here’s how to get an ice hockey scholarship.
Be in Junior A hockey
You’ll need several years of playing in Junior A hockey to be considered for a scholarship. This starts the recruitment process for coaches, and the longer you’re in Junior A hockey, the longer a coach will be able to observe your talents. This will give the coach an idea of your potential, both as an individual player and against the best competition.
Meet the NCAA requirements
In order to be an NCAA athlete, you have to meet at least the minimum requirements set by the NCAA itself. Eligibility is based on your high school course work, grades, and test scores. These minimum requirements differ between divisions, but 99% of student-athletes who meet the Division I requirements will be eligible for all other divisions. These academic requirements include:
- Graduating high school.
- Completing 16 NCAA-approved core courses.
- Completing 10 core courses before your senior year, seven of them including English, math, or science courses. None of these can be repeated or replaced starting in your senior year.
- Earning a 2.3 GPA or higher in your core courses.
- Earning a combined SAT score or ACT sum score that matches your core-course GPA on the NCAA scale.
Do some research
Each school is different, and therefore have different requirements for entering their hockey programs. Rather than worry about being a certain size or weight (though it certainly helps to aim for those as well), go to the website of the schools you’re looking at and find out what leagues they typically recruit players from. Try to play in that league if you’d like to play for that school.