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International Student-Athletes

With more than 20,000 international student-athletes studying and competing at NCAA member institutions, international student-athletes add much to the learning environment within intercollegiate athletics. International student-athletes face unique challenges once they land on campus, including additional travel, language barriers, difficulties in adjusting to a new sports culture, acclimatization issues and isolation. With such challenges, international student-athletes bring depth and cultural diversity that enhances the learning environment of every student-athlete, coach and administrator in the Association.


2020 NCAA Inclusion Summer Series

The office of inclusion has launched a summer series of inclusion-focused online programs in each of its five core areas: disability, international, LGBTQ, race/ethnicity and women. The purpose of this series is to build community, develop knowledge and skillsets, provide practical takeaways, and empower participants’ efforts on equity, diversity and inclusion initiatives on their campus.

A Global Perspective - Part 1: International Student-Athletes Navigating Current Events in the US

There are more than 20,000 international student-athletes studying and competing at NCAA schools.  In this session, international student-athletes shared their lived experiences navigating uncertain factors, including the COVID-19 pandemic, racial injustice in the United States, and new rules issued by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. The purpose of the session was to convey the unique perspectives of international student-athletes and to better understand what athletics administrators, coaches and teammates can do to ensure these student-athletes are welcomed and supported.

A Global Perspective – Part 2: Regulatory Information to Support International Student-Athletes during COVID-19

This session featured expert panelists for a discussion on NCAA eligibility, international admissions and student services and immigration law.  The purpose of the session was to provide practical information to athletics administrators, coaches and international student-athletes about NCAA eligibility, admissions and enrollment, travel restrictions and border closures, visas and other required documentation.