The Commitment Process: Different for Everyone

Deena Kassem and Zaid Elbaroudi

  Applying to schools can be a very stressful process especially for those who want to compete as athletes at a college level.
  Some athletes commit a lot sooner than you expect. Senior Eva Bruer committed to the University Of Minnesota for women’s soccer during her sophomore year.
Bruer said, “Committing so early relieved a lot of stress for me junior and senior year.”
  Committing to a school early isn’t as great as it seems. Senior Lily Gilbertson also committed her sophomore year to Northwestern University for women’s soccer. “It was really hard in the moment because I did not know what I wanted to do at that point. I also was looking at some other schools so it was hard to decide,” said Gilbertson, “I knew I wanted to stay in the Midwest, so that narrowed down my decision and I went through a process similar to everyone else applying to college, but I had to decide earlier and based off my sport.”
  Bruer also had some challenges committing her sophomore year. Bruer stated, “the process was very stressful because I was only 15 at the time and it was a lot to think about. Writing letters to coaches, traveling out of state every two to three weeks for soccer, and trying to keep my grades up was a lot to balance.”
  With similar challenges, both athletes made their decisions for similar reasons. “I narrowed down my top two other choices to University of Minnesota and DePaul University. I decided on Northwestern University based off of the education standpoint, the coaches, and the culture of the team,” said Gilbertson.
  Bruer said, “The other offer I was seriously considering was from Kansas University. They had great facilities and a great soccer program. Despite this, I chose the University of Minnesota because the soccer team had a great culture and it felt like family. The coaching staff is all women, which is really rare. I also thought the biology program was very good and that is what I knew I wanted to major in.”
  As for the application process for committees, Bruer said, “the application process was basically the same, though I only had to do one. I used the same application as everyone else applying to the University of Minnesota. I also had to do some things for the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) to make sure I met their requirements.”
  “For athletes, they do give you some guidelines for GPA and ACT based on what you held going into your commitment, but for the most part if you commit, you are gonna get in,” said Gilbertson.
  “It was weird to watch my friends go through the normal process, since I only applied to one school. I thought it was cool to see everyone else apply to a bunch of schools and see where they get in and then decide, so from that standpoint I thought I was cool, but everyone else was stressing trying to figure out where to go,” said Gilbertson.
  Senior Lauren Honke’s experience was slightly different, since her sport is not a part of the NCAA. Honke, who did not commit until the spring of her senior year, will be competing for the      University of Minnesota-Twin Cities’ Dance Team. Honke stated, “I had to apply beforehand and then try out in the spring, I had to be accepted into the school in order to try out, but I still wasn’t committed before I tried out because I was still waiting to hear back from colleges.”
“The coaches had talked to me beforehand on Instagram, but I was never officially recruited, so I went and tried out for the team on my own,” said Honke.