International students make up over 20,000 of student-athletes according to the NCAA. Despite, this large demographic, international students are often underrepresented in college athletics.
The NCAA’s office of inclusion’s mission is to promote diversity, inclusion, and equity for student-athletes and coaches regardless of gender, race, or ethnic background. The office of inclusion offers a NCAA Inclusion forum every year, to connect students and learn how to accommodate to their needs and improve the system.
The NCAA allowed student-athlete Alex Auster and Coach James Winchester to host a panel on how to improve the international student-athlete experience in their seventh-annual NCAA Inclusion Forum.
This opened the door for many other student athletes to share their stories on twitter under the #NCAAInclusion hashtag.
Students owned their backgrounds, and made their presence known.
The NCAA noted the increase in international student-athlete participation in college sports. With international student-athletes becoming a growing community in college sports, the NCAA should continue to learn how to accommodate their needs.
The NCAA has been moving toward more a more inclusive environment since last April. They have also begun sharing the “international student-athlete experience” to shed light on their growing community.
By sharing their story, and learning what they struggle with, the NCAA can help assist those who struggle in new cultures and with new workloads.