Our Dream Maker Program allows second and third year students to develop a professional portfolio that showcases their academic interests, passions, and skills. We then share this portfolio with companies that match the student's skills and aspirations in order to aid them in discovering a future career. We want to ensure that our graduating students discover a field they are interested in that then leads to a purposeful life.
While talk of next career steps can be daunting, our partner career coach, Nadia Ibrahim-Taney of Beyond Discovery Coaching makes navigating and leveraging a university degree manageable. Nadia's first-hand knowledge of how to operationalize a degree in the job market and is here to help our UDA students thrive.
Before the new academic year gets into full swing, We'd also like to welcome our student-athletes who have returned to their on-campus abodes or those who are just joining a UDA program and are beginning their studies and training at New Mexico State University, the University of Chester and the University of Gloucestershire.
Get to Know some of our players!
As our Academy students are settling in, we wanted to take the opportunity to get to know some of players on a more personal level!
Meet Carlos Ramirez from Greeley, Colorado who will be joining the New Mexico State University Academy.
Meet Joshua Edlemann from Michigan who will be joining the University of Gloucestershire Academy.
Want to learn more?
NMSU offers a wide variety of student activities in the beautiful southwest region of the U.S. Nestled within the Organ mountains of Las Cruces, a vibrant and history-rich community, NMSU has a calendar chock-full of events.
"I was getting emails from other soccer clubs and associations, and I signed UDA as one of them and it was different — they give the game a different approach, a year round soccer. You can play soccer at NMSU, which has worked for me because I live in New Mexico. I also wanted to go to a university nearby to receive in- state tuition. That's how I found out about UDA. So I went to one of their trials in Texas, and I ended up liking it a lot.
UDA’s recruitment process was also really good. They gave me a different approach than other soccer camps that I've been to, and told me to play how I needed to. I felt very welcomed from the start.
I'm also excited for college. I'm going to be living in a dorm, and I’m looking forward to a normal college experience, such as meeting new people and moving ahead. UDA has also given me the option to study here for two years and then study at the University of Chester in England, and I am leaning more towards that option. I don’t want to move right away because I have family here. For now, I’m planning to go with the flow and focus on school and soccer."
How does uda prepare student athletes for university?
“We spend a lot of time in preparation before our students go to college. First, we introduce them to the program and share our expectations. We also invite them to an ID camp where they get to meet us one-on-one in person. Then, we invite them to an orientation where our UK staff come over to our US staff to ensure that students and staff are at the same place for the weekend. In this way, the first stage of the preparation is in the US. We also have a strong support network in the UK — from the coaching staff to the university — to guide students through their programs. As students come to the end of their careers, we hold two events. The first one is at the start, which is the Dream Maker program. The other event is a series called Life After UDA where we talk about visa process as well as soccer and career opportunities. In this way, we are involved in helping our students navigate their college life before they get there, once there, and help them figure out what they are going to do after.”
What are the advantages of pursuing higher education through uda?
“One of the biggest advantages for a player to pursue a program through UDA is the longevity of the training seasons. Typically, American students will go three to four months in training, but with UDA, they will train for nine months of the year. The students also play more games — we guarantee them 25 to 30 games. In addition to playing 25 to 30 games, the students are also going to be coached by professionals that have played in professional games, and now have coached in the professional game. Players gain three crucial benefits: longer playing, longer training, and the guidance of qualified professionals.”
what are you looking for in players?
“We want to make sure our students complete the course, so we’re looking for students who are in good academic standing. We’re also looking for students with good character — honesty and reliability. We also want our players to be able to think critically so that they can solve problems without help. We have played with very technical players who have good mechanics, and are highly skilled, and that is usually what I look for in our potential players.”
What advice do you have for those who are considering applying to a uda program?
“Research the programs. Do as much research as you can on the potential programs; make it a job to research the program and your college opportunities.”
how do you help students plan their academic life?
“We first ask students what they think would fall in line with their career goals. We also ask them to think about the cost: whether the program is affordable. Finally, we advise them to find a program that can go side-by-side with their soccer and academic career.”