Question: Academic Support for College Athletes
I am a junior and have 3.2 GPA. I have had learning disabilities all my life, but I study hard to get the grades I get. Could you tell me if they have tutors to help athletes? I have been a starting catcher on my high school and traveling team since I was a freshman, and I made the All City Team in my sophomore year. Any help would be appreciated.

Answer: Academic Support for College Athletes

The key to making it in college as a softball player with learning disabilities is to plan ahead and to start early to overcome the obstacles in your way. For example, you need to get complete documentation of your learning disability so you can arrange to take the SAT and ACT under "special circumstance" testing conditions. You need to get mom and dad to start looking into this right now if you're a junior because this is a process that takes time. (Call the SAT and ACT Boards or consult your high school counselor for more information.)

You also need to be sure you're taking NCAA core classes to meet eligibility requirements. The NCAA does have some special provisions for LD students, so have mom or dad call the NCAA to find out more about this. Then, when you begin to contact colleges, be sure to let coaches know about this situation and to send copies of transcripts, etc., so that they can see from the very beginning how good your work ethic is and how you have successfully mastered your high school classes.

Many colleges have great resources for LD students (and for athletes as well!) that include tutors, study halls, grade-checks, and much more. You might consider looking at smaller colleges with good student-teacher ratios, and possibly at smaller softball programs with schedules that aren't as hugely demanding as some of the big D-I schools can be. This may allow you a better chance to succeed both on the playing field and in the classroom. Hope this helps. Keep up the good work. It will pay off!