Are there men’s rowing scholarships?
Yes, athletes can find men’s rowing scholarships, but these are difficult to earn. A large portion of men’s rowing teams are NCAA D3 or Ivy League and do not offer athletic scholarships. There are also many teams that operate on a tight budget, as rowing is an expensive sport, or deem that offering admission help into a very good school is enough of a draw for recruits. You’ll have to be proactive in the recruiting process and stand out athletically to earn an athletic scholarship.
However, teams do work with student-athletes and their families to secure financial aid from colleges, whether that is need-based aid or academic scholarships. Even if you do not receive athletic scholarship money, you can potentially receive a considerable financial aid package from a college that looks just as appealing as an athletic scholarship. That’s why it is important to focus on what your overall financial assistance will look like and not just an athletic scholarship amount.
How many men’s rowing scholarships are there?
To put it simply, there are not many men’s rowing scholarships available. A large portion of men’s rowing teams are located at NCAA Division 3 or Ivy League colleges, neither of which give out athletic scholarships. Additionally, many teams are located at academically rigorous colleges that can perhaps offer an easier path through the admissions process but are not willing to offer athletic scholarship money. Schools that do offer athletic scholarship dollars—like University of California-Berkeley, Northeastern University, Boston University, University of Washington or Stanford University—tend to have extremely high athletic standards.
However, coaches at some colleges can help rowers secure academic scholarships and need-based aid, as well as bump up their application at the admissions office. For most athletes, rowing is not a path to big athletic scholarship dollars as much as it is a way to get the attention of top academic institutions.
Rowing scholarship erg times for men’s rowing
There is no hard erg time number that will score you an athletic scholarship. The bottom end for earning an athletic scholarship at the college level is likely in the 6:40s, but even this depends on a variety of factors, and athletic scholarships for non-elite rowers are rare.
A recruit’s 2k erg time, academics, character and experience are all considered, but there are no athletic scholarships awarded by NCAA Division 3 or Ivy league (Division 1) colleges—though these colleges do help athletes secure other types of funds. That’s why it’s important to start your recruiting process early, research a target list of colleges and keep an open mind about which college can offer the best athletic, academic and financial fit.
Finding colleges that offer rowing scholarships
The best way to find colleges that offer rowing scholarships is to stay proactive in the college recruiting process and reach out directly to coaches. Athletic budgets for teams change and coaches can also choose how much money to allocate for scholarships and how to disperse it. To specifically find an athletic scholarship for men’s collegiate rowing, you’ll want to look at the list of rowing colleges and look outside NCAA Division 3 and Ivy League schools as they do not offer athletic scholarships—though they can help secure academic scholarships and need-based aid. Top rowing programs like University of Washington, University of California-Berkeley, Northeastern University, Boston University and Stanford University recruit elite athletes aggressively, so these athletic scholarships are difficult to secure. Here’s how rowing scholarships break down by different levels:
- Division 1: This is where the majority of athletic scholarships can be found, excluding Ivy League schools (Brown, Columbia, Cornell, Dartmouth, Harvard, Penn, Princeton, Yale). Need-based aid and academic scholarships are also available.
- Division 2: Athletic scholarships, academic scholarships and need-based aid are available, but there are only a handful of rowing teams at this level.
- Division 3: Academic scholarships and need-based aid are available, but athletic scholarships are not available. There are also almost as many rowing teams at the D3 level (37) as there are at the D1 level (39).
- NAIA: Athletic scholarships, academic scholarships and need-based aid are available, but there are only a couple of rowing teams at this level.
- Club: The largest number of teams can be found at this level. However, there are no athletic scholarships and rowers pay out-of-pocket for club fees.
For recruits looking to find athletic scholarship money, a great resource to use is NCSA’s list of Best Men’s Rowing Colleges.