First Day in Tennis College Life

First Day of My Tennis College Scholarship

Back in August 2015, I was on my way to the United States for the first time in my life. With a scholarship to play at University of North Carolina, Asheville (UNCA), a mid-major Division 1 school, I was extremely excited. I met a fellow British tennis player at Heathrow airport as we had both been recruited to to go to UNCA so it was great to be travelling with someone into the unknown…!

” I realised I forgot to bring my F-1 student visa with me!…”

After meeting my fellow teammate at Heathrow airport, I realised I forgot to bring my F-1 student visa with me (very rookie mistake) which delayed us at Charlotte airport in North Carolina for 3 hours as I had to wait for a scanned copy to come through. I didn’t give the best first impression. 

Moral of the story: don’t forget your F-1 visa! 

Our coach picked us up at the airport in Charlotte, NC, late at night and we went straight to Arby’s (a fast food restaurant). What a great first meal in the States…

On our way to campus, we had to stop at Walmart to buy our bedding so within an hour of landing in America I’d visited Arby’s and Walmart, the perfect introduction to the States. 

 Fast forward a couple of hours…

We arrived at campus at 11pm on a Thursday evening not expecting to really meet any of the team for the next day or so. The whole team were there at our dorm rooms to welcome us and help us move in. We had guys on the team from Israel, Greece, Germany, America, and England. They stayed for an hour or so and we got to know everyone. I thought these guys would just be fellow teammates, but after a day or so you realise your teammates will be your best friends for many many years to come. 

The next morning, we met coach again and he gave us a tour of the campus, we met our academic advisors, and had various meetings with other freshmen athletes so that was great to make some friends on other teams too. We shared a dorm room with a 2 soccer players so we became really close friends with them. 

Later that day, we met up with the team for a hit at the courts. Our courts were about a 5 minute drive off campus, but the facilities we had more than made up for the fact we weren’t on campus. We had 6 outdoor courts, 4 indoor courts, a big gym, swimming pool, sauna, and a hot tub. 

We hit for about 2 hours or so and got accustomed to the level of tennis which was much higher than I expected. Although this was slightly nerve wracking, it was also very exciting because I knew that with the coach we had and the amount of tennis I’d be playing, I would improve very quickly. I think me and the fellow freshman actually lost 6-0 in a set of doubles… wonder what the rest of the team thought about our tennis!

Later that evening, we went for a team dinner at a local burger restaurant which was potentially the best burger I’d ever had. It was sublime. If you’re ever in Asheville, NC, visit Farmburger!

Finally, after the dinner, we went back to the seniors apartment off campus and spent the evening there. After 24 hours, it felt like I’d known my teammates for years. 

I hope this gives you some idea of what your first day or two may look like as you arrive in America. It was very relaxed, everyone was so welcoming and friendly and it really helped me get settled in for when classes started and our proper training schedule began in the next few days.

Ready for the next chapter in your life?

We will help you find the perfect US Tennis College Scholarship.
Fill in the form and our team will get back to you as soon as possible.

We work closely with over 1000 US Universities ranging from Div 1 to Div 3 and our reputation in the tennis world gives us the ability to secure the best US College scholarships for our players, train and compete while getting an education at heavily subsidised fees or even for FREE…we are here to help!

Make an Enquiry