Academics And The Student Athlete Essay

Academics And The Student Athlete Essay

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Academics and the Student-Athlete
For starters, most student-athletes entering college are told what it means to be a student-athlete, but they never truly realize life as a student-athlete. They are confident and even cocky that they are ready to take on this challenge. In order to become a successful student-athlete it takes a lot of prioritizing, responsibility, motivation, and great time management skills. How are some student-athletes successful and some not? Big time sports are entrenched in higher education and have become the public face of the university. Colleges struggle to balance how much of the athletic program defines the university. For some, the pursuit for athletic success has compelled universities to compromise their academic integrity. More importantly, college athletes do not receive the educational opportunities they were promised. There are many factors that impact their ability to be successful academically. The term "student-athlete" was invented in 1950 by the NCAA. This signature term remains intentionally ambiguous. Are they students who play sports, or are the athletes attending school? Most students are admitted to college based on their potential benefit from educational opportunities. The so called student-athlete is expected to fill both rolls. That of an athlete and that of a student. However, their commitment to each of these rolls vary. At the division 1 level, especially in the high revenue generating sports, student-athletes are admitted for their potential to provide benefits for the institution. Influential critics of college athletes, Shulman and Bowen, the authors of "The Game of Life" conducted years of research across a total of thirty universities. They found that today 's athletes e...


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... by universities on the backs of these student-athletes (Rheenen, Atwood). Furthermore, there is this massive contradiction between this so called arms race, and the implementation of the NCAA academic reform. On one hand, there is are institutions who are applying massive amounts of pressure on the coaching staff to produce wins, which in turn produces revenue for the school. James Duderstadt, a former college football player and President of the University of Michigan, "observed that universities exploit the athletic talents of college athletes for financial gain and public visibility, in part by tolerating low graduation rates and meaningless degrees in majors like general studies or recreational life" (Duderstadt). However, there have not been enough studies that explored the idea of exploitation from the student-athletes ' perspective. According to Rheenen and

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