Intercollegiate Athletics: Impacts on Student–Athletes

Hundreds of thousands of college and university students in the United States choose to participate in intercollegiate athletics as part of their higher education experience, a choice that impacts the college environment for them in a myriad of ways. Those impacts are often dependent upon the specific sport and the size of the institution and its athletic program. The benefits to the student–athlete might include (a) academic support and success, (b) higher level of engagement with peers and institution, (c) development of important character traits, and (d) development of physical and mental health. However, there are possible negatives to the commitment made by student–athletes. They include academic issues, social isolation, and physical and mental well-being concerns. This entry discusses benefits and disadvantages to students from ...

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