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The College Recruiting Process for International Students

The 5 steps to help you find the college for you

How do you get recruited is a common question. Is it possible to play at a university in the United States if you are not a citizen of the United States? The answer is Yes, it is possible. Even if you don't reside in the United States, it is quite possible to get seen and recruited by coaches. There are thousands of international athletes competing in college sports in the U.S.

What do you need to know?

To begin, you must recognize that entering the recruitment process is a significant commitment. People frequently do not realize that they will have to relocate from their hometown across the country, if not the world. That's a big step, especially for someone as young as 17 or 18. Learn about the application procedure, what exams you'll need to take to apply to universities, and how to prepare a good highlight video because coaches may not be able to come see you play in person. A high-quality highlight video is the best method to acquire a scholarship and be accepted to a university. Once you make a highlight video and get familiar with the whole process, there comes the second step.


The SAT is a college entrance exam that most colleges and universities use to determine admittance. Every student, no matter from what country they are coming from will have to take the SAT test. The Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) is a standardized test used to assess non-native English speakers' ability to enroll in English-speaking colleges. TOEFL is usually mandatory for students whose first language is not English.

When does the recruiting process start?

The recruiting process begins early in high school, most likely before or during junior year. The sooner you begin the recruitment process if you intend to compete at the NCAA D1 or D2 level, the better. If you start your recruitment process later than expected, you'll be OK and still be able to find your desired school. As soon as you begin the recruitment process, coaches will begin evaluating possible recruits as well. Make sure you're familiar with the different division levels and evaluate your level of interest.

How to get recruited as international student-athlete

The college recruitment process might be a little different for international students. While the process begins at the same time, overseas players should be aware of several peculiarities, including academic requirements (SAT and TOEFL). Additionally, official documentation, grades, academic courses, and other items must be sent (and frequently translated) by overseas athletes. Researching different institutions and learning more about their academic programs, scholarships, and financial aid is crucial for international students. Email or social media are the best ways for international students to communicate with coaches.


The author is Magdalena Maksimovic and her email address is


Planted, not Buried is a non-profit organization that focuses on empowering, educating, and inspiring others through outreach, events, networking, and opportunities. Learn more at, , or follow us on all social media at @PlantedNB

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