Whether you are a talented athlete looking for a full-ride scholarship to your dream college or you are more of a club sport athlete looking to play at a more recreational level, there are scholarships for both types, and everyone in-between. Based on your sport, there may be more or less competition which will affect the amount of scholarship money and awards that can be disbursed. For high-visibility sports such as football or basketball, it may be harder to break into a program and land a full-ride scholarship. Even though college and universities are the most sought-out for athletic scholarships, there are organizations and businesses that reward student-athletes. Know your skill, worth, and do your research when looking into possible athletic scholarships.
For the Serious Athlete
As you are preparing your profile, also make a list of schools you’re interested in and start with a college search; don’t sell yourself short, but be open to possibilities at smaller schools and those outside of the top tier Division I athletics. Be mindful also of what’s expected of you to be eligible for those top prizes. And don’t forget one of the most important rules about applying for scholarships: apply early and apply often. Many athletes catch college coaches’ eyes during their earlier years in high school, so don’t wait until the end of your senior year to start communicating with coaches. By that same token, if you had a rough first couple seasons in high school, take the time to better your standings and stats to appeal to scouting coaches. Know your skill set and realistic opportunities for playing at the college level – whether it be DI, DII, or DIII (remember, DIII cannot award scholarship money to athletes.) While many people seek to play/compete on a DI team, the reality is that other divisions house just as many talented athletes.
For the Recreational Athlete
Landing an athletic scholarship isn’t all about being the best basketball player, wrestler or bowler on your high school team. There are many awards available for athletes who play not to make a career of a sport, but because they enjoy the game. Local leagues and organizations in sports like baseball and golf, for example, offer many scholarships just for playing on a team, no matter how good you are. Although it helps to be talented in a given area, don’t be discouraged if you’re not cut out for the lifestyle required to make yourself a marketable athlete at the top level of play. You don’t even have to play on your college’s team. Many rewards require an interest in a sport and the intention to continue playing it when you go to college, even it’s on a club or intramural team. Since these scholarships tend to not be performance-based, other criteria such as financial need or proven academic success may be required instead.
Bowling has strong competition at the college level, particularly in Divisions I and II, where some of the top talent has a chance to earn substantial scholarship dollars. While collegiate bowling in the NCAA is only open to women, there are scholarships for male bowlers as well.
If you are looking to play at the college level, some of the top schools include Wichita State University, University of Nebraska, New Jersey City University, and Vanderbilt University. These schools’ bowling programs award scholarships based on talent. As bowling has become more high-visibility and more popular among student athletes, the level of competition has increased for school-funded scholarships. Much of the funding is controlled by organizations like the NCAA, which also means there is a great amount of emphasis placed on not only talent but academic records, as those awarded scholarships must meet certain GPA requirements.
A particularly good resource for bowling scholarships is the USBC, as it is the national governing body of bowling as recognized by the USOC. This organization requires a membership and bowling is a good example of a sport where it would be wise to utilize any connections to local leagues and organizations. If you’re good enough to play on your local league’s team, chances are you’re eligible for a number of scholarships. Most cities, states and regions also have their own bowling associations and scholarship funds earmarked for participants in their groups, or residents of those areas. These local awards often emphasize criteria outside of bowling, including community service, academic achievement and financial need.
Source : Scholarships.com