In the last post, we started to examine ways that parents could help their student athletes throughout the NCAA college soccer recruiting process. This process can be confusing and challenging at times to student-athletes and their families as they try to find the right fit. In today’s post, we will continue with the discussion on other ways that parents can help.
Don’t Do All the Work
College should be a time where young men and women really start to mature into young adults. Their childhood days are over and it is time for them to start taking on more responsibility and accountability. Have your son or daughter complete all of the college applications, have them set up appointments to take tours, and have them keep track of deadlines for when paperwork is due. They are not going to be able to do it all themselves (i.e. when filling out FASFA forms, they will need parents’ tax info and if you want to take a college tour with them, they need to work in conjunction with your schedule), however the bulk of the work, needs to fall on their shoulders and not the parents! Hold them accountable.
Don’t Lecture, Guide in Good Directions
Nobody likes to be lectured—–“I told you if you did not do that, then this would happen.” If you want a student-athlete to tune you out, then lecturing them is a sure fire way to make that happen. As a parent, presumably you have more experience in life then your son or daughter. Use that experience to your advantage; draw on it to help guide them to success. For example, if your son or daughter is being recruited heavily by a D3 school that does NOT have his/her major, but they really want you to come play soccer, then you as a parent may want to steer them to a school that does have what he/she wants to study. Don’t just lecture them!
Use Your Network
Parents all like to talk about their kids and it should be no different during to college recruiting process. Chances are you have had friends, family, co-workers or other acquaintances go through the process as well. Draw on their experience; learn from their successes and mistakes. It is also likely that you have had someone in your network that either went to one of the schools on your son’s or daughter’s list or has a family member there. Tap into their specific knowledge of the school.
Seek Out Help
If you or your student-athlete needs help that you cannot provide, then seek it out. There are lots of resources available— high school counselors, college admissions counselors, college financial aid counselors to name a few. Friends, neighbors and families that have gone through the process can help too. The Internet has a wealth of resources that you can search as well— websites like the Princeton Review or the College Board are full of information. All of these resources are free! You can also get professional help, but of course that is going to cost you.
The bottom line is this—there are many ways that parents can help out their student-athletes as they go through recruiting process and make the transition from high school to college. It can be difficult and confusing at times, but there are many things that parents can do to make that transition go a little bit more smoothly.
Thanks for reading!
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