Students who participate in athletics are constantly balancing practice, conditioning, travel time to away games, missed classes, and sometimes recovery or therapy resulting from injuries. Despite these complicating factors, student-athletes have a unique skill set that they can provide to employers. Student-athletes are both achievement-oriented and resilient – when faced with obstacles and challenges, their dedication and work ethic learned through years of playing experiences often helps them to find and identify solutions.
In addition to being strong team players, student-athletes, in many cases, stand out as strong communicators as well. Having worked for a “boss” or a coach, and addressing issues with teammates on and off the field has equipped athletes with the ability to communicate effectively. Identifying both your athletic as well as your academic talent as strengths will help you to be successful, giving you the knowledge to leverage your athletic experience and the skills you have developed in a variety of ways to help you prepare for and transition into a successful career.
Many employers find that hiring student-athletes is very wise; however, there is often a disconnect between employer and student perception of these qualifications. While students develop a multitude of transferable skills through their athletic experience, many often struggle when it comes to recognizing the value of their time as a student-athlete. If you are a student-athlete preparing to enter the job market, it is important to remember that the skills and values you have gained over a lifetime of competing and mastering a sport are extremely valuable in your search for a career.
Particularly as upperclassmen, student-athletes often face scheduling challenges due to commitments, such as practice and games, which are typically not faced by their non-athlete peers.
Meeting with a career counselor may be helpful to you for a number of reasons, including:
- Understanding what you bring to the table as a Student-Athlete - as you consider your athletic and academic accomplishments, we suggest reviewing them with others as well to consider:
- What skills and experiences do I have that best overlap with what employers are seeking?
- If I want to demonstrate my value to a company or organization, what can or do I highlight from my experience?
- How can I list or describe my experience in a way that will mean something to a hiring manager who has little experience with hiring and managing student-athletes?
- What has playing sports at the collegiate level taught me about myself and how have I grown because of it?
- What does being a student-athlete say about me as a job candidate?
- Find a mentor
- When you are faced with the pressures of being a student-athlete, it can often be most helpful to speak with someone who understands your experience. Career Development or the Athletics Department on campus may be able to help connect you to a mentor. A mentor will be able to offer useful advice regarding the ways in which they were able to prioritize their own career development during their time in college.
- Student-athletes may have fewer options for immersive experiences
Student-Athlete Advisory Council (SAAC)
- SAAC Members serve as student-athlete mentors for their team concerning student-athlete affairs, including Academic Excellence, Athletic Excellence, Personal Development, Career Development, and Community Service. They are dedicated to representing the interests of our fellow student-athletes for the betterment of athletics at LVC.
Career Development and Job Search Resources
This site, specifically for student-athletes, provides job postings for athletics (approx. 99%) and non-athletics (approx. 1%), as well as content geared toward assisting student-athletes.
While this page specifies that it is for non-athletes, this could be a valuable resource for student-athletes that could assist them in getting careers related to their sport (that aren’t playing careers). The information serves as excellent cursory information to these fields and provides a thorough list of resources in addition.
Online career network built by athletes for athletes.