Sports are an important part of American culture, and play a major role in US education. Most high schools have organized teams for men’s and women’s sports, and universities have options ranging from small on-campus clubs to multimillion-dollar programs with nationally televised games. For some sports, playing for a university team is a pathway to the professional leagues.
While academics and career preparation are important reasons to study in the USA, you can also gain a lot from university campus life, including sports.
Here are a few reasons why you should get involved in US university sports at your university:
They help you to feel part of the community
American colleges and universities have lots of informal, on-campus sports clubs that are easy to join, and are a great way to meet students who share your interests. You can join teams for almost everything: rugby, ice hockey, badminton, table tennis, and so much more! If you’ve never played a sport before, this is a great chance to learn in a low-pressure environment.
You can also participate in campus sports by watching your university’s intercollegiate team compete against other colleges or universities. Going to a game is an immersion in campus traditions, from learning the team cheers to attending a “tailgating” barbecue in the stadium parking lot before match time.
For international students especially, getting involved in campus sports is a great way to acclimate to your university. Arizona State University students learn quickly that going to American football games is a fun way to participate in campus life:
They deepen your understanding of American language and culture
Sports are prominent not only in university life, but in American life in general. Spoken English uses a lot of phrases that reference sports. Watch American football, and you’ll learn why an initial project meeting is called a “kick off.” Play baseball and you’ll know why you should feel proud that your classmate said you “hit a home run” on an assignment. Learning these idioms will also help you to sound more fluent in the American style of speaking.
They’re a fun way to take a study break
As a student, you’ll spend a lot of time sitting in the classroom or at a study desk. Getting plenty of exercise will help you to stay healthy and manage stress.
Even if you’re not running around a playing field, watching university sports is a fun excuse to step away from your homework. Every March, Pace University Pathways students gather in the International Office to watch the national college basketball tournament on TV together and try to predict which university will win each game. participating in US university sports are a great chance to take a break, meet other students, and learn more about American culture all at once.
If you’re excited to experience campus life in the USA, explore our US partner universities to find the best fit for you!