Celine Grothe | College Soccer | The Life as a Student-Athlete

Celine Grothe

Sport Soccer
Position Goalkeeper
University Pearl River Community College
Major Bachelor in Business Administration

WHY DID YOU CHOOSE TO PLAY COLLEGE SOCCER?

I chose to play college soccer because I didn’t want to choose between my competitive sport and my education after graduating high school. I wanted to continue playing soccer at a high level, but I still wanted to start studying. For me, the opportunity to go to the U.S. was ideal, because there I can play the sport I love at the highest level every day and at the same time work towards a degree.

WHAT DOES A TYPICAL DAY AS A STUDENT-ATHLETE LOOK LIKE FOR YOU?

At the moment, my daily routine looks like this: I get up every morning at around 6:30 and get ready for training. After breakfast, I leave for training with my team at 7:20. We have training from 8 to 10 every morning. After training, we go to the physio room to do some recovery exercises or take an ice bath. Then we have lunch around 12 o’clock. After that it looks very different every day. Sometimes I have university right after and have to go to my classes, but sometimes I have class later in the afternoon and rest after training. Sometimes I also have a day without classes. On these days I usually do homework or assignments from my online classes.

WHAT WAS YOUR ACADEMIC EXPERIENCE LIKE AS A STUDENT-ATHLETE?

The academic side of being a student-athlete can be quite challenging during the season, as you put a lot of time into sports, but still can’t neglect school. Especially in the first year where everything is new, both the language and the whole university system. However, you get into the language and the school system quickly and if you bring a little diligence, you don’t have to worry about your grades. The professors also understand the situation as a student-athlete and especially that you are not a native speaker. They often offer a wide range of support and you are not left alone with the whole transition.

HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE THE TRAINING AND FACILITIES?

The training is similar to Germany, but I have a lot more training in the U.S. than in Germany. In any case, the body has to get used to this extreme load. But you are guided through it quite well, because regeneration is a topic every day. The facility is well equipped for this, especially for the athletes. We have a large training room where our physio treats us. In this room there are also blackrolls, an ice bath, bicycles and much more that is suitable for regeneration and injury prevention.

WHAT DOES A TYPICAL COLLEGE GAME DAY LOOK LIKE?

I usually have game days twice a week. Either Tuesday or Wednesday and every Saturday. On game days, we always have a team meeting in the meeting room before we leave, where we talk about our tactics as well as the tactics of the opponent. The lineup is also announced at this time. Afterwards we either go to our home field or we start our journey to the away field with a coach. These trips take between 1h and 4h. After we arrive at the field we warm up and have another short meeting. After that we have our game.

WHY COLLEGE SPORTS?

SOCCER

Train daily at the highest level and compete with up-and-coming athletes from around the world.

EDUCATION

The USA offers you the best universities in the world: the academic content and methods are first-class and internationally recognized.

DEVELOPMENT

Take advantage of this unique opportunity to develop personally in a short period of time: gain experience with other cultures and learn perfect English.

CAREER

One thing is for sure: You will stand out positively for future employers with your international education.

DID YOU HAVE ACCESS TO PHYSICAL THERAPISTS?

As already mentioned, a physio is always ready. She accompanies us through small aches and pains as well as major injuries. Of course, the goal of our physio is mainly injury prevention by making sure that we have a good regeneration as well as a lot of stretching and strengthening exercises. Since I had an injury during the season, I spent every day in the training room and thus quickly strengthened my body again. My injury was treated every day with different high-tech equipment, so I made it through the season well.

SUMMARIZE YOUR COLLEGE EXPERIENCE IN AMERICA

Since I’m still in the middle of my college years I can’t say anything about my entire college years yet, however I would say that it is a very intense time. You get to have so many experiences. You get to play the sport you love every day and do your studies at the same time. You get to experience a new country, a new culture, and a new language. You get to know friends with whom you go through thick and thin and I think you grow a lot in terms of character through this completely new situation.

WHY WOULD YOU RECOMMEND OTHER ATHLETES TO GO TO THE USA?

I would recommend it to every athlete to take this step, no matter what plans you pursue with the sport. Whether you want to become a professional or you just want to practice your sport at a high level for a few more years. It’s worth it, because the experience you gain during this time – athletically, academically, but also as a person – is irreplaceable and no one can take this time away from you. It is something you will remember for the rest of your life and you can draw so many positive things from it. So take this chance because you only have it once.

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