Maryland Terrapins offer lifetime degree guarantee to student-athletes.
If you want the best student-athletes to attend your institution, you must offer the best to those student athletes.
On Tuesday, August 19, the University of Maryland did just that in what they call “The Maryland Way Guarantee”.
Beginning in November 2014-2015, ‘The Maryland Way Guarantee’ will provide all incoming University of Maryland student-athletes with a multi-year scholarship guarantee.
— Maryland Athletics (@umterps) August 19, 2014
Maryland Athletics released this statement on the ground breaking move (via umterps.com).
“The University of Maryland has announced it will be one of the first NCAA Division I institutions to offer a lifetime degree guarantee for student-athletes in all sports. In addition, the University is incorporating the promise of exhausted eligibility aid into financial aid agreements.
Beginning in November of 2014-15, ‘The Maryland Way Guarantee’ will provide all incoming student-athletes with a multi-year scholarship guarantee. Pursuant to this program, should a student-athlete exhaust his or her eligibility prior to graduating, Maryland will guarantee his or her aid will continue through graduation. If a student-athlete is injured and unable to compete, Maryland will guarantee his or her aid will continue through graduation.
Additionally, Maryland will provide tuition, books and fees for any student-athlete who leaves the institution in good academic standing and returns to complete his or her degree.”
Other institutions have made such guarantees to “revenue sports” but the University of Maryland is one of the first to offer a lifetime degree guarantee to student-athletes in all sports.
Ever since Kevin Anderson took over as Director of Athletics in 2010, there have been a lot of big changes in College Park.
The hiring of Randy Edsall and Mark Turgeon, the complete re-branding of Maryland Athletics, the move to the Big Ten, and now, “The Maryland Way Guarantee” is another great move to help Maryland become a great place for student-athletes to learn and compete.
Here is what Anderson had to say about “The Maryland Way Guarantee”.
“Our vision is to be the best intercollegiate athletic program while producing graduates who are prepared to serve as leaders in the local, state and global communities,” director of athletics Kevin Anderson said. “We are confident ‘The Maryland Way Guarantee’ will further demonstrate our commitment to our student-athletes’ pursuit of a college degree.”
Here are a few thoughts on how “The Maryland Way Guarantee” helps Maryland Athletics and the University of Maryland.
1. It puts the students first.
With all the controversy surrounding the NCAA and how they treat and “use” their student athletes, I say it’s about time an institution stands up and says we are putting students first. Things such as “likeness” infringement, player names and numbers being used to sell jerseys and the injured student-athletes having to find another way to pay for school have all put a sour taste in a lot of peoples’ mouths.
The University of Maryland is leading the way in that they will honor scholarships regardless of player performance, injuries or even if a student-athlete leaves and then decides to come back and finish their degree. For all student-athletes this is a huge plus when looking for a place to pursue their education and play collegiate athletics.
2. It encourages continued learning.
The one year rule in college basketball is something I believe does not promote continued learning. Players who have the talent to go pro know they only have to go to school one year until they can head to the promised land of the NBA. Though “The Maryland Way Guarantee” does not get rid of the one year rule, it does encourage these student-athletes to come back and finish their education. Sports careers on the field and on the court do not last forever. Whether it’s injury or age that ends a professional athlete’s career, it’s important that they have a plan for their life after sports. The University of Maryland is making sure its student-athletes continue learning and finish their degrees if they do decide to go pro early.
3. It is a great investment.
When a college coach offers a student-athlete a scholarship, it’s an investment. Investing in the education of the future generation is always a smart investment. The time, money and experience that will be invested in the lives of Maryland athletes will help not only the university succeed but will help our state, our county and the world become a better place.
What are your thoughts on “The Maryland Way Guarantee”? Do you like the direction Kevin Anderson is taking Maryland Athletics? Comment with your thoughts.