SwimmingFiguring Out How To 'ACE' Your College Swimming Decision

Figuring Out How To ‘ACE’ Your College Swimming Decision

How To ‘ACE’ Your College Swimming Decision

Towards the end of their high school career, many swimmers are faced with the task of choosing a college. This decision is something that is arguably the most important call in a swimmer’s career. Many people around you have influence over this choice. Picking a college may seem like a no-brainer to some. For others, there are many variables that should be considered before choosing a school. Does the training align with your local swim club training? Do the other student-athletes seem like people who you want to surround yourself with? Could you see yourself being happy spending most of your time at this place? Use the “ACE” acronym (Academics, Culture, Environment) to help solidify your decision.

This choice is important. So, it is critical to make sure you’ve done the research. Making sure you’ve immersed yourself in the atmosphere and have thought immensely about it. As of late, we see a lot of swimmers entering the transport portal. Perhaps, they didn’t consider every “ACE” factor before making their decision.


A common mistake swimmers will make when choosing a school is basing their decision on how it can benefit their athletic career. It is wiser to choose a school based on its academic prowess and athletics. You want to choose a place that suits your needs academically. Be sure to research important information about an institution.  Look at factors that match your academic concerns, such as the average GPA, test scores, and majors offered. This approach will better help you understand whether a school is an appropriate fit for you is. In fact, it is often said that swimmers are usually the hardest workers, even when transitioning to real world jobs. Making sure your academics are a priority can help you with career options after swimming.


College is not an easy transition for anyone. But ensuring the team culture is the best fit for you can make it that much smoother. Visiting the school can give you a decent idea of the team culture, their values, and philosophy. You want to be sure these factors align with your personal beliefs and values so that you are able to fit in with the team. You may consider doing a little research on your potential teammates. This will help to ensure their values line up with yours. Do they like doing the same things as you outside of swimming? Do your personalities mesh well? Moreover, making an early connection with your potential teammates is a good idea. This connection allows you to get a feel for them. The relationships you create with your fellow student-athletes can be some of the most impactful throughout your college career.


The geographical location for your college swimming career should be considered. Oftentimes, when student-athletes make college choices, they do not think about the impact of the physical environment. Will you pick a location that has a climate that you are familiar with, or will you change it completely?  This is a critical assessment because this will be your home away from home most of each year. Student-athletes need a positive adjustment, but major changes to his or her physical environment may be a bit too much.

Acing It

By applying these factors when trying to find the right fit for your college swimming, you will “ACE” your selection and provide yourself with an opportunity to succeed.

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